In the lead up to Christmas this year, a beautiful person in my life and the lives of so many of my extended family died and so, just days before life was supposed to turn festive, came a funeral. Christmas, with its traditions based on the Christian belief in the birth of Christ, seems at… Continue reading LOST & FOUND… how sharing a loss, helped find some healing
Diagnosis can bring devastation, but after 10 years living with a pretty big one (heart failure, post misdiagnosis of SCAD), I have learned that it doesn't bring only devastation... There are times in life when things take a turn for the worst, and times in life when things take a turn for the better because… Continue reading Yes, GREEN SHOOTS are possible after and because of, that pain in your heart…
With patients, ‘that place’ can refer to the venue where they received their diagnosis and/or treatment, or 'that place' where they were when they first noticed the lump, or experienced the sudden pain that would change their lives utterly. For others, it can be more of an experience, 'that place' in memory that holds the… Continue reading “I JUST CAN’T GO THERE!” But what if going to ‘that place’ is key to helping you heal?
I recently got a message from a lady in the US. She had read a blogpost I had previously written on the impact of SCAD, heart failure, and open-heart surgery, (see '10 years on...') and having experienced all three of these herself, only a few months prior, wanted to know what my medical results were… Continue reading Could SHARING YOUR STORY be the purpose of your pain?
I have always been a reader, in fact books are my ‘shoe addiction’. A bookshop is my go-to place. Little wonder then that when I have faced the challenging times in my life, I have dived into the world of books, in part to seek connection with someone else in my predicament, but equally to… Continue reading BOOK MEDICINE… GREAT READS to help heal the heart, mind and soul!
IT'S A DAY OF CELEBRATION BUT A DAY OF MIXED EMOTIONS TOO for many... those without Dads, for a lifetime, or lost through ill health or death, those who longed to be Dads, but never were, or those who were, but lost a child. And what about all those who have never officially had the… Continue reading ALL TYPES OF DADS…
We've all been there, those moments in life where life itself can seem more demanding than we are able for, where we feel exhausted before we even start, where we feel alone on our journey. While I am not in that place at this time in my life, I have been! And the reality is,… Continue reading ‘THE CLIMB’, by Pauline O’Shea, a reflection and poem for those feeling overwhelmed, lost and alone…
I've been ill since last I wrote. It lasted for weeeeeeks. A virus. Not Covid... officially... but a definite stepbrother or stepsister. First came the excessive tired, then the cough, the sore throat, the weak limbs... it felt like someone had pulled the bath plug out... Then there was the chest infection, the reduced oxygen,… Continue reading ‘LISTEN TO YOUR BODY’!… yes, but what happens to the rest of your life while you do🤦♀️ ??
As a heart patient who has survived multiple heart attacks as a result of a condition called SCAD (Spontaneous Coronary Artery Dissection) combined with a medical misdiagnosis, and then went on to experience a cardiac arrest, open heart surgery and a diagnosis of heart failure, you may think I'd sort of fallen out of love… Continue reading ‘A HEART’, by Pauline O’Shea… a poem written for everyone who has one!
On this month, 10 years ago, my life changed forever. On the very day I brought my beautiful baby daughter home from the hospital, I suffered a condition called SCAD, where a tear occurred in one of my coronary arteries, causing a heart attack. I was 38 years old. A trip to A+E, a medical… Continue reading 10 YEARS on from a SCAD & HEART FAILURE diagnosis … here are some of the things I’ve learned…
I am blessed to have my mother still with me, but I know many who do not. I know those too who have lost a child, and those who longed for them but never had them, both having to live with absence in their hearts, often invisible to the outside world. I have met people… Continue reading ‘A MOTHER’S DAY FOR ALL’, reflection and poem, by Pauline O’Shea
As I lay in my bed in a large cardiac ward some years ago after open heart surgery, I became somewhat fixated on a tiny window on the opposite side of the ward. It wasn’t even showing a great view, unless you count a metal fire escape as ‘artistic’. If I was asked at the… Continue reading NATURE’S HEALING… science shows that connecting with nature can improve our physical health… so is it time Doctors prescribed ‘Nature’ to patients?
Photo by gdtography from PexelsBEING IRISHBy Pauline O’Shea Where once the bog road was the wayThe Irish of the modern dayPrefer to travel motorwaysTo work for tech, than go save hay Where once a granny wore a shawlAnd sat by home fires lone and smallNow with her smartphone apps installedShe laughs at gifs and facetime’s all Where once spuds were the… Continue reading ‘Being Irish’, by Pauline O’Shea… Happy St. Patrick’s Day ☘
Wishing all the wonderful women of the world in the home, in business, caring for others, dealing with wars, in the world of sports, art, media, volunteering in their communities, in religious life, dealing with challenges, dealing with loss, dealing with children, dealing with elderly parents, living alone, bereaved, separated, living with a health diagnosis,… Continue reading Happy International Women’s Day 2022 💗 from Pauline O’Shea
Main photo by Michelle Leman from Pexels thank you to Michelle and to her brave and beautiful model. In a recent conversation with a fellow heart failure patient, who has had the condition for five years, she began to cry when she talked about her interactions with a lifelong friend post diagnosis. With her permission, I quote her… Continue reading The INVISIBILITY of our illnesses or struggles can be an extra challenge, but there are ways to overcome…
It's everywhere this week, from TVs to phones, newspapers to radio, our world is at war and so with saddened heart I write these words today... I hope humanity can rise to the humanitarian challenge it is now facing, that aggressor's everywhere are defeated, and that ultimately, goodness, freedom, love and peace win, and with… Continue reading ‘O World at War’, by Pauline O’Shea
From political conflicts, to culture wars, celebrity twitter rows, to mask wearing divergent opinion, it seems conflict is the new dominant feature in our daily lives, now that the Covid tide is receding (we hope!). We are back to hearing about lots of ‘outrage’ to this and that, lots of accusations of fake news when… Continue reading CONFLICT & CANCEL CULTURE are now bed fellows, but is this combination a missed opportunity for ALL to heal?
Love is in the air this week, in case you've missed the card and chocolate stands emblazoned with reminders of February 14th being Valentine's Day. We have been commercially encouraged everywhere it seems to deliver our love in the form of chocolates, flowers, cards and well, whatever else we might be willing to stretch to… Continue reading To LOVE regardless… how St. Valentine’s message can help our wellbeing & healing
We all do it… criticise our bodies. We find them too big here, too small there, too round here and maybe even too flat there. When you’re a patient the criticism levels can rise even further… the heart that won’t beat like it ‘should’, the body that won’t deliver enough energy to meet your life… Continue reading In GRATITUDE to the bodies that keep us alive each day….
It happens to us all. We have the blazing row with someone, or take offence to what they said, or choose to ignore the one who has hurt us, certain that our hostility is the right and only course of action to take. Fueled by pride and anger in the aftermath of the 'offence', we… Continue reading “Finding grace”… how healing can become a beautiful thing… by Pauline O’Shea
Covid 19 has been a challenge for everyone. Two years of uncertainty and at times tremendous fear, has taken its toll. It is understandable therefore to see the jubilant faces of so many, staring out of our newspapers and newsfeeds, as they celebrate our departure from so many restrictions. But what about the medically vulnerable… Continue reading Our society has reopened, but have the medically vulnerable become a “forgotten people”?
In case you missed it, last Monday was called ‘Blue Monday’ (Jan 17th), declared the official saddest and most depressing day of the year back in 2005, by Cliff Arnall, a tutor at the time, attached to Cardiff University, in response to a request from a travel company to provide a scientific formula for the… Continue reading Yes, perhaps we are finally emerging from Covid, but what if you, or a loved one is still FEELING BLUE?
This week saw the murder of a beautiful young teacher and talented musician, in Ireland, who simply went for a run by a river on a popular walkway, after work, on a bright January afternoon, only to have it end up costing her, her life. It has shocked our nation, both men and women, who… Continue reading ‘For all the women’, by Pauline O’Shea
When I woke up in ICU after emergency open heart surgery, I discovered quickly that as well as a shattered body and a shattered mind, I now possessed a shattered faith, in myself, my heart and my God. Up to then, life seemed largely like a Lego construction to me, built up brick by brick,… Continue reading Finding FAITH in my heart once more…
I hope you all had a good Christmas or at least the comfort of some good love and kindness if you didn't. Today I am feeling more poetic... hope you enjoy this, my latest poem... wishing all who read it, all the good wishes it professes... and that you all may experience the jewels of… Continue reading ‘This New Year’, by Pauline O’Shea