#healing, faith, healing, Heart, Hope, Medical, Patient journey, Soul journey

Yes, GREEN SHOOTS are possible after and because of, that pain in your heart…

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…

#healing, Adult child, Being empowered, being human, Blogging, gratitude, healing, Heart, life lessons, Life matters, Life medicine, Medical, Mental Health, My medical world, pain, Patient, Patient journey, Soul journey, Support, wordpress

“I JUST CAN’T GO THERE!” But what if going to ‘that place’ is key to helping you heal?

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?

#healing, Blogging, Charity work, healing, Heart, Hope, Inspirational, Ireland, life lessons, Life medicine, Medical, My medical world, pain, Patient journey, Soul journey, Vlogging, wordpress, Writing

Could SHARING YOUR STORY be the purpose of your pain?

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?

#healing, Being empowered, Blogging, Curveballs, Good reads, healing, Heart, Hope, Inspirational, life lessons, Medical, Mental Health, Patient, Patient journey, Soul journey, wordpress, Words of wisdom, Writing

BOOK MEDICINE… GREAT READS to help heal the heart, mind and soul!

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!

#healing, being human, Blogging, Covid, Curveballs, faith, Feeling crap, Feeling good, grace, gratitude, Home, life lessons, Life matters, Natures nurture, Parent ponders, Patient journey, self-care, Support, women, wordpress, Writing

‘LISTEN TO YOUR BODY’!… yes, but what happens to the rest of your life while you do🤦‍♀️ ??

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🤦‍♀️ ??

#healing, grace, gratitude, healing, Heart, Joy, Life matters, love, Lucky me, Medical, My kind of people, Patient journey, poetry, wordpress, Writing

‘A HEART’, by Pauline O’Shea… a poem written for everyone who has one!

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!

#healing, Being empowered, Blogging, Curveballs, healing, Heart, Hope, life lessons, Life medicine, Medical, Mental Health, Modern science, My kind of people, My medical world, Patient, Patient journey, Support, wordpress, Words of wisdom, Writing

10 YEARS on from a SCAD & HEART FAILURE diagnosis … here are some of the things I’ve learned…

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…

#healing, Blogging, Feeling good, healing, Heart, Life medicine, Medical, Mental Health, Modern science, My medical world, Natures nurture, Patient journey, wordpress, Writing

NATURE’S HEALING… science shows that connecting with nature can improve our physical health… so is it time Doctors prescribed ‘Nature’ to patients?

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?

#healing, Being empowered, being human, Blogging, faith, grace, Heart, life lessons, love, Medical, Mental Health, pain, Patient journey, self-care, Soul journey, wordpress, Writing

The INVISIBILITY of our illnesses or struggles can be an extra challenge, but there are ways to overcome…

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…

Blogging, Covid, Heart, Ireland, Medical, Patient, Patient journey, Reopening society, Science, wordpress, Writing

Our society has reopened, but have the medically vulnerable become a “forgotten people”?

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”?

#healing, Blogging, Charity work, Feeling crap, healing, Heart, Hope, Mental Health, mental health charities, Patient journey, Support, wordpress, Writing

Yes, perhaps we are finally emerging from Covid, but what if you, or a loved one is still FEELING BLUE?

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?

Curveballs, Divine Inspiration, Facts of life, faith, healing, Heart, New to me, Patient journey, Soul journey

Finding FAITH in my heart once more…

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…

#healing, Being empowered, Curveballs, healing, Heart, Hope, Life medicine, Mental Health, Patient journey

“It’s OK to not be OK,”… but is the RESPONSE to that admission causing more hurt than healing?

We’ve all heard the message, ‘It’s OK to not be OK’, to reach out, to tell someone how you feel… but the response to such a statement can perhaps be as vital as the admission itself, for the one who is seeking healing. I recently watched a documentary called ‘The Weight of Gold’ narrated by… Continue reading “It’s OK to not be OK,”… but is the RESPONSE to that admission causing more hurt than healing?

#curveballs, #healing, Being empowered, Good reads, Heart, Hope, Life matters, Life medicine, Mental Health, Modern science, My medical world, Patient journey, Words of wisdom

The PSYCHOLOGICAL impact of illness… why we need to HEAL OUR MINDS, as well as our BODIES!

Last week I had the pleasure of being part of a presentation and discussion on the psychological impact of diagnosis. It’s a topic close to my heart, having experienced all manner of psychological fallout to my own misdiagnosis, eventual diagnosis and horrendous legacy of both, from stress and anxiety, to lows and PTSD (more on… Continue reading The PSYCHOLOGICAL impact of illness… why we need to HEAL OUR MINDS, as well as our BODIES!

#curveballs, Feeling crap, Heart, Life medicine, Mental Health, Modern science, My medical world, Patient journey

FATIGUE… a battle best shared than hidden…

As I write this week, I am sitting on a couch recovering. I’ve not been sick as much as I have hit a wall in terms of my health, that large metal wall, unbendable and unmerciful, that allows no progress forward bar breathing and if you are lucky the use of your digits. In the… Continue reading FATIGUE… a battle best shared than hidden…

#healing, Being empowered, Good reads, Heart, Life matters, Patient journey, Words of wisdom

Sorry, but I NEED to say “NO!”

It’s been a manic few weeks in my world, as I am sure it has been for many of you. September, with it’s new ‘opening up’ and ‘returning to normal’ strategies has seen lots begin again and anew for us. For me, it meant, one child embarking on college, two others returning to school, patient… Continue reading Sorry, but I NEED to say “NO!”

Being empowered, Patient journey

Why the PATIENT needs to be treated as an EQUAL in our healthcare systems…

We’ve all been there at some point, been in that parent child type scenario with a fellow adult, where the other is leaving us in no doubt that they are the expert and we, the floundering, less important of the two. Alas our healthcare systems can be rife with this type of relationship, the doctor… Continue reading Why the PATIENT needs to be treated as an EQUAL in our healthcare systems…

#healing, Being empowered, Heart, Hope, Life matters, Life medicine, My kind of people, Patient journey

‘CLICK & CONNECT’… why finding your tribe, is a UNIQUE and VITAL lifeline in a struggle…

You know how it is, your life turns upside down, while everyone else’s looks rosier than ever. Your Facebook feed is full of smiling family pics from the latest staycation hotspot (is it Donegal this week, or has it moved back to Kerry?). You even notice the odd ‘Playa de something or other’ creeping into… Continue reading ‘CLICK & CONNECT’… why finding your tribe, is a UNIQUE and VITAL lifeline in a struggle…

#healing, Adult child, Heart, Life matters, love, Lucky me, Patient journey, The relations

The power of LOVE in healing…

When I regained consciousness in ICU after open heart surgery, bleary eyed and with a raging temperature from an infection that made me feel like I had landed at the gates of hell, the first thing I remember seeing was my Dad’s red coat. He was coming through a door, and talking to me, as… Continue reading The power of LOVE in healing…

Feeling crap, Heart, Hope, Life matters, Parent ponders, Patient journey

HEART FAILURE & MOTHERHOOD… and learning to juggle the two

When you find yourself describing yourself as ‘Thomas the tank engine’ in the morning, and ‘Salty’, the clapped-out engine, in the afternoon, it can mean only one thing, that you’re talking to a child about living with heart failure. We were having a lovely week away, my daughter and I, taking in the beach, visitor… Continue reading HEART FAILURE & MOTHERHOOD… and learning to juggle the two

#healing, Being empowered, Divine Inspiration, Hope, Life matters, Patient journey, Soul journey

‘RISING STRONG’, yes Brené Brown, I think that’s the call, when cometh the life challenge

There are a lot of books written on overcoming life challenges, 5 steps this way, 10 steps that way, all trying to produce the complete, ‘over it with these strategies’ result. Having been through a few big life challenges myself (cardiac arrest and marriage breakdown, to name but two), I can see the appeal of… Continue reading ‘RISING STRONG’, yes Brené Brown, I think that’s the call, when cometh the life challenge

#healing, Being empowered, Feeling good, Heart, Hope, Ireland, Life medicine, Lucky me, Patient, Patient journey, Soul journey

HEALING through HELPING… and how it sows seeds for the better

When you’ve been through great pain, there is something within, that wants to help prevent that pain for another, or at least help them get through it, if indeed they have to bear it. It is hard to explain that feeling, or why it is there, but throughout the world, we hear this reaction from… Continue reading HEALING through HELPING… and how it sows seeds for the better

#curveballs, #healing, Heart, Life matters, Life medicine, My medical world, Patient, Patient journey

COMPASSION, a vital medicine for the wounded…

When I was lying in the high dependency unit, post emergency open heart surgery, several years ago, grieving for my life that was, my children that I couldn’t see, and a future life that seemed, back then, so unlikely, I craved, more than anything, human connection. In the long, lonely hours of night, behind the… Continue reading COMPASSION, a vital medicine for the wounded…

#curveballs, Being a woman, Heart, Life matters, Parent ponders, Patient journey

When MOM’S GET SICK… the GUILT can be the worst bit

Holding my new-born and delighting in her arrival, I had no idea that my coronary artery was about to threaten our ability to ever have a relationship. Birth is such a time of newness, hope and promise, that the thoughts of death and ending are probably at their most alien. And for other good reasons… Continue reading When MOM’S GET SICK… the GUILT can be the worst bit

#curveballs, #healing, Hope, Life medicine, Patient journey, Soul journey

I now know that LIFE IS MEDICINE…

A few years ago I got a sudden illness and nearly died. With a new diagnosis, it was time to investigate everything that could help me get well. My journey led me to doctors and hospitals and afterwards to all kinds of advice and therapies. But healing, I discovered, wasn’t all about taking enough pills,… Continue reading I now know that LIFE IS MEDICINE…