Archive for June, 2010

Heartbeats Part II

I start out for the grocery store, in the car, driving.  I get about a mile down the two-lane rural road when my chest tightens and my heart starts to fibrillate.  Hmm. I keep going.  It continues.  Better pull over. I do.  Recline in the seat, deep breaths, bear down–no relief.  I lie there.   Haven’t had one in so long…why now? It crosses my mind that this morning a very important person in my life is, for the second time, having a procedure in UC Medical Center, San Francisco, to try and shock her heart out of continuous fibrillation.  My gaze is drawn to a white SUV coming down the road in my direction.  What’s that bundle on the roof of the car? It gets closer and I see the bundle is a dog poking his head up through the open sun roof, and he is enjoying himself completely.  Oh, how cute! At seven minutes into the fibrillation I turn the car around and head for home.  I am right behind the white SUV and gaze upon the long, lean, tannish-grey body of the dog up on hind legs between the seats, head through the roof, his sweet innocent ears flapping in the breeze.  How adorable is that! I giggle my way home.  Fibrillating all the way.

Halfway through the door I announce to my partner, “I’m having a fib, gonna lie down.”  At 14 minutes, the fibrillation subsides.  My partner takes my blood pressure: 99 over 62; heart rate: 70.   “I’m gonna just rest here a while,” I say.  I lie there and try to figure it out.  It’s only a moment or two before the words echo in my head: “Don’t die…please, don’t die.”  My friend in UC Medical Center.  I was afraid that the shock would somehow go awry and kill her.  I call my partner in and share my epiphany.  My whole being relaxes.

Being aware and conscious of our feelings is a big step on the road to healing.  I find that voicing them to someone whom I trust and with whom I feel safe takes me farther down that road.

Do you have someone, or several someones, to listen with compassion to your feelings, and share the road with you?  I hope so. If not, who in your sphere may be waiting in the wings for just that opportunity?

Would I have received the joyous gift of seeing that dog in the sun roof if I hadn’t been stopped on the side of the road waiting out a heart fibrillation?  I don’t know.  What I do know is that happy flappy dog will stay with me always–a bit of heaven, I say!

Enjoy each moment,


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Let ‘Em Flow

Why are we so hesitant to cry?  About our own stuff, I mean?

I can cry at the drop of a hat while reading a Hallmark Card, or watching a movie, or even while reading newpaper article aloud to my partner!  But when my own sadness shows up, I tend to say to myself, Oh, no, not now; I’ve got things to do; I want to be happy today; or, the one that works most often, I don’t want puffy eyes and a stuffed-up nose! Vanity always wins in the end.

Not so long ago, shortly after one of these internal discussions, I had a heart fibrilation.  I have them on occasion but hadn’t had one in a long time.  After hearing that info from me on the phone, a dear and wise friend said, “Susan, the next time you feel sad and want to cry, do it.  Let yourself cry.  Your heart needs the release.”  Oh.  Yes.  Okay.

Just do it, friends.  Let yourself cry–all day if you must.  Our hearts need the release.



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Thanks for checking in.

To those of you whose mother, or father, or both have died, I am very sorry for your loss.

I hope you have read my new free eBook, 5 Roads To Healing From The Loss Of A Parent.

As I said in that book, we all grieve differently.  Even so, many of the feelings we experience will be the same.

I would like to hear what parts of my story you relate to.  What has inspired you? What are you doing to help yourself through this difficult time?

If you haven’t read the book and want to, click on the To Share & Inspire tab at the top of this page, sign up, and read the book with my compliments.

Thank you,


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