My Heart Story

We can despair 
that rose bushes have thorns, 
or rejoice 
that thorn bushes have roses. 
-Abraham Lincoln 

That is one of my favorite quotes... and it is because that is how I choose to live every day. You see, I am a Heart Disease Survivor. 

On December 4, 2009, at 34 years old, I was admitted into the hospital for my 2nd heart surgery. It was a unique and complex surgery. 

But, due to ongoing cardiac medical research, I was able to have the opportunity to play with my little boy again without fear of passing out from an abnormally fast heart rate. I was able to participate in an active lifestyle without fear of going into sudden cardiac arrest. 

The procedure and recovery were quite tough. I was in the ICU for several days. I had a tube sticking out of my chest to aid in draining the fluid collecting around my heart. I was in extreme pain. But, I endured and thankfully the surgery was considered successful! However, my heart wasn't made completely perfect. It still has issues and requires frequent monitoring. I have also had a 3rd procedure and there is always the possibility of additional operations.

My fight is not over. Although I have endured many cuts and scrapes from sharp “thorns,” I choose to rejoice because of the roses among the thorns. 

Family and friends are my roses. I also have loved ones who suffer with or have died due to heart disease. I have sincere respect for others facing their own thorns. Heart disease may be a silent killer, but its effects are not silent. Many of you may have a loved one with heart disease, have lost a loved one from heart disease, or has a friend who is a heart disease survivor, or... you may be a survivor yourself. 

This blog is mostly about Artwork by JoJo... but, heart disease awareness is also a passion of mine!

If you want to know more about Heart Disease, visit the American Heart Association site and the Go Red for Women website. There is great information.

If you have a story and want to share it with me.... feel free.

With a REJOICING heart, 
Joanne

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