For most of us, feelings of anxiety or panic are occasional, mild and brief – the body’s normal responses to being worried or scared. I never thought of myself as a person who was prone to experience anxiety or panic – until I survived a heart attack. I can now tell you quite confidently that there are few things in life that are more anxiety-producing than being in the middle of a frickety-frackin’ heart attack. . . . . Continue reading “Panic attack – or heart attack?”
For most of us, feelings of anxiety or panic are generally occasional, mild and brief – normal responses to being worried or scared. I never thought of myself as a person who was prone to experience anxiety or panic – until I survived a heart attack. I can now tell you quite confidently that there are few things in life that are more anxiety-producing than being in the middle of a frickety-frackin’ heart attack. . . Continue reading “The chest pain / panic connection”
I blame genetics – and three decades spent working in public relations – for generally making me one of those smiley, glass-half-full, annoyingly über-positive personalities much of the time. Not even horrific symptoms during my heart attack could alter the weak happy face that seemed freakishly pasted on throughout that ordeal.
It’s as if I were channeling Elizabeth Banks‘ classic character in her short yet brilliant film “Just A Little Heart Attack“ – in which she attempts to smile brightly despite textbook cardiac symptoms, and even good-naturedly taunts her concerned family:
“Do I look like the kind of person who’s having a HEART ATTACK?”
Don’t make a fuss. Chin up. Don’t worry, be happy. Just get on with it. I’m fine, just fine.
Trouble is: people like me who sport a perma-smiley face may not be “fine”. Not at all. And I now believe that feeling obliged to pretend we are what we’re not can be both physically and psychologically damaging. Continue reading “A heart patient’s positive attitude: a “crazy, crazy idea”?”
One of the small joys of having launched this site is discovering by happy accident the wisdom of other writers – even when they’re writing on unrelated topics not remotely connected to my favourite subject which is, of course, women and our heart health. For example, I happened upon a link to Sandra Pawula‘s lovely blog called Always Well Within. Sandra teaches mindfulness meditation, and she lives in Hawai’i (note her correct spelling).
She also has a hubby and three cats. I don’t even know this woman, but I like her already. And while scanning through her beautiful site, I was stopped cold by an article she called: “Why Sadness is the Key to True Happiness“. Continue reading “Is it post-heart attack depression – or just feeling sad?”
Guest post, originally broadcast on WBFO Radio by Dr. Elvira Aletta:
“I’m sure you’ve heard that if you boil a pot of water and throw in a live frog, that frog will hop right out, saving his life to croak another day. If, on the other hand, you place a frog in a pot of cold water and turn the heat up slowly, that frog will stay in the pot. The frog will not jump out.
“Instead, he will slowly get used to the increasingly hot water until it boils to death. Truth or urban legend? To prove it, I’d have to cook a live frog – and that’s not going to happen! It sounds true, so it should be because of what it teaches us. Continue reading ““Stress creep”: are you like the frog in the pot of boiling water?”