When heart disease wears a smile

by Carolyn Thomas      @HeartSisters

I love this photo of three generations of our family, taken during the weekend of my late mother’s 80th birthday. That’s her on the left, me in the middle, my daughter Larissa Jane on the right. Happy smiles all around – yet one significant problem:  I was very, very ill while smiling for the photographer. In fact, I was admitted to the hospital the day after it was taken.  And this time – unlike my first trip to the Emergency Department two weeks earlier –  my “widow-maker” heart attack was appropriately diagnosed and treated.         .            .   Continue reading “When heart disease wears a smile”

Looking good for your doctor’s appointment: oui ou non?

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by Carolyn Thomas  ♥  @HeartSisters

I remember that moment very clearly. I was sitting in my kitchen, staring at the wall clock. At the time, I was in the throes of a dark and debilitating depression following my heart attack, struggling with frightening daily cardiac issues that had resulted in being ordered off work on extended medical leave while my cardiologists tried to solve the mystery. I had a follow-up appointment with my doctor that morning, and at that moment, I was having a very hard time trying to decide whether or not I should wash my hair.

Normally, shower/hair-washing is just part of my regular daily routine – not something to be decided at all. But on this day, some part of me knew that this might be the third or fourth or maybe even the fifth day in a row I’d gone without bothering to shower, and maybe I shouldn’t let my doctor see me like this. 

Wouldn’t want her to see how bad things had become for me. Wouldn’t want her to see me without my perfect pasted-on happy smile/make-up/clothes/hair. Continue reading “Looking good for your doctor’s appointment: oui ou non?”