Unseen, unheard: the commonly shared lived experience of patients

by Carolyn Thomas  ♥ @HeartSisters

At first, I was surprised that so many women living with breast cancer were following my Heart Sisters blog. I’ve never had breast cancer and I rarely write about breast cancer (except here, for example, on the known link between breast cancer treatment and subsequent heart disease). Yet what I was soon to learn was that heart patients have lots in common with cancer patients, or with anybody else who has been blindsided by a serious medical crisis. Although the diagnosis may be different, we can face the same shock, fear, confusion, pain and exhaustion experienced by all who suddenly know what it’s like to become a patient.

Abigail Johnston is one of those breast cancer patients. We follow each other’s blogs. She was a 38-year old lawyer and mother of two boys when she was diagnosed with Stage IV Metatastatic Breast Cancer (MBC) in 2017. She writes about this on her compelling blog, No Half Measures from her home in Florida.  Every word of her recent post called “Unseen and Unheard  hit home for me.        .       Continue reading “Unseen, unheard: the commonly shared lived experience of patients”

When doctors become patients

by Carolyn Thomas  @HeartSisters

hospital corridor FOUNDRY CO PIXABAYIn his online essay called This Won’t Hurt A Bit, cardiologist Dr. Eric Van De Graaff tells his own story of being a hospital patient after surviving a motorcycle accident while he was in med school. His experiences as a patient will sound very familiar to heart patients, and the lessons he learned while on the other end of the stethoscope may very well have made him a far better doctor.  For example:   Continue reading “When doctors become patients”