Posts Tagged With: living with a congenital heart condition

Day 3630: Weary

I’m weary as I’m writing this because

  • I often have trouble sleeping after my very full Thursday of doing individual and group therapy from 10 AM to 7 PM,
  • I have to keep making design decisions about our shower/bathroom remodel even after I think I’m finally done with all that,
  • I struggle balancing my needs with other people’s needs,
  • I have a very unusual heart which does not sustain me very well when I’m climbing stairs or hills,
  • this time of the year tires me out, and
  • I’m turning 70 in a few months, so what do you expect?

However, I’m not too weary to look for quotes about “weary.”

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Today is National Weary Willie Day.

I expect to grow weary of the jokes people might make about Weary Willie Day.

I hope people aren’t too weary to look at the rest of my images today.

The Daily Bitch seems weary of niceties today.

Here’s the late great Madeline Kahn singing a weary song in Blazing Saddles (which I never grow weary of).

I hope you’re not too weary to leave a comment about this weary post.

Thanks to all who help perk me up when I’m weary, including YOU.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, quotes | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Day 3571: Progress

I’m making progress on today’s blog post — I’ve come up with a title based on the images I have to share with you.

Here’s a definition of “progress” …

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… and quotes about “progress.”

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As you progress through the rest of this post, do you see evidence of progress?

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Here’s what I find on YouTube when I search for “progress.”

I also find this:

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Thanks to all who help me progress through life, including YOU.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, quotes | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Day 3557: What day is it again?

Today is

  • the second day of Rosh Hashanah,
  • National Forgiveness Day,
  • a day I’m providing individual and group therapy remotely,
  • another day I need to make phone calls about my long-delayed upstairs bathroom repair project,
  • a day when I should make some decisions about a river cruise in May 2023,
  • a day when I am going to try to revel in doing those things I can control instead of dreading making mistakes,
  • a day when I’m going to take the Warfarin dosage recommended by my care team as we try to get my INR levels back under control,
  • a day when I hope to read something from the stacks of books I’ve been accumulating,
  • a day when Joan the cat is going to want to go outside while Harley will not, and
  • Tuesday.

It’s also a day, again, when I share my latest images.

What day is it again? It’s another day when I love the Daily Bitch Calendar.

Today is also the day that I share with my friend Carol and with you “A Call from Long Island” from the album You Don’t Have to be Jewish.

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What day is it again? It’s a day when I express gratitude to all the kind people in my life, including YOU.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Day 3482: Introductions

The introduction to today’s post is going to be my random thoughts about introductions:

  • I’m working on the introduction to the first book I’ve ever written — “How to Make Your Brain Shut Up.”
  • My introduction of a new member into my Coping and Healing groups always includes inviting the other people to remember what it felt like when they were new to the group.
  • When I was giving a talk about my groups and was asked what I wanted as an introduction, I replied, “Just say, this is Ann Koplow. She knows what she’s talking about.”
  • Before the introduction in 2016 of a mechanical heart valve and the need to take Coumadin/Warfarin for the rest of my life, I was very anxious about the impact of those things, but now it’s all second nature to me.
  • My husband Michael and I feared that the introduction of a new cat, Joan, would bother our old cat Harley, but after a brief introductory period of hissing and him adjusting to her, everybody’s fine.

Now that we’ve finished the introduction, do you see introductions in my images for today?

To celebrate National Cousins Day, I want to tell my cousin Lani (who’s being reading this blog since its introduction in 2013) how much I love and appreciate her. I’m looking forward to our introduction to Viking River cruises in May 2023.

Here are the two songs I think have especially great introductions:

I feel fine about ending this post about introductions with gratitude for all the wonderful people I’m been introduced to over the years, including YOU!

Categories: group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Day 3402: What I’ve Been Watching

Every evening, my husband Michael and I’ve been watching something on TV together. Lately, we’ve been watching “Better Call Saul,” “Top Chef,” and “Landscape Artist of the Year,” but all those got put on hold when Michael discovered “Cat Hospital” on Acorn TV, which is available to us this week only.

“Cat Hospital,” according to the website, shows “the cute, cuddly, and dramatic daily life at an Irish veterinary practice catering exclusively to cats.” I don’t know about you, but with all the dramatic daily life we’ve been experiencing, I need cute and cuddly wherever I can find it.

Before Michael and I watched “Cat Hospital” last night, my son Aaron and I met up with our old friend Tom Joyce, British comedian and mathematician extraordinaire who has appeared in this blog many times (including here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and especially here) and who is visiting Boston for the first time.

My son and I’ve been watching and running into the incredibly funny, smart, and kind Tom in Edinburgh many times over the last nine years. I’ve been watching in amazement as the coincidences with Tom have piled up — besides an appreciation for Aaron, Tom and I share many things: we both have congenital heart conditions, have pacemakers, had surgeries when we were young, and are now on Coumadin. I look forward to many years ahead where I’ll be watching Tom, Aaron, and I sharing more great times together.

All the other images in today’s blog, of course, also reflect what I’ve been watching:

I’ve been watching the Daily Bitch for many years and today I’ll be watching some people erasing the stigma associated with mental illness in my remote therapy groups.

Here’s a YouTube video of what I’ve been watching:

What have you been watching?

Thanks for watching many things with me today!

Categories: life in the USA, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Day 3396: Naming It

I’m naming it, here and now, that I’ve written previous blog posts named “naming it” because naming it is a helpful coping strategy.

Earlier this week, people in therapy named how naming your feelings — including grief, anxiety, fear, sadness, and anger — can help you deal with those feelings. And I recently read an article, which I can’t name right now, that cited scientific proof that naming feelings can help relieve them.

Can you name any examples of naming it in my images for today?

I’m naming that (1) The Daily Bitch Calendar is a great name for my favorite calendar and (2) there are many National Hairball Awareness Days around here.

Here’s what I find on YouTube when I search for “naming it.”

At the end of each post, I name my thanks for all the people who help me blog every day, and your name is on that gratitude list!

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, therapy | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 19 Comments

Day 3386: Important messages

In all of my careers — including marketing communications and psychotherapy — I’ve thought a lot about communcating important messages.

In order to effectively deliver important messages, you need to

  • know your audience and
  • choose clear, strong, passionate, and honest ideas to reach your audience and inspire them to action.

I believe that many important messages are getting lost in all the noise out there and I fear we are running out of time to communicate them effectively.

Do you see important messages in any of my images for today?

Important messages I received from being born with a very unusual heart is that life is short and every day counts.

Here’s what I find on YouTube when I search for “important messages.”

I look forward to the important messages that will appear in the comments section, below.

Gratitude is an important message I deliver at the end of every post, so thanks to all who help me deliver the daily messages in this blog, including YOU!

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, politics | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Day 3352: Herding cats

A manager I know at work sometimes refers to her job as “herding cats.”

Here’s what I find online about herding cats:

Managing people can be like herding cats. Managing thoughts, which can go everywhere — into the future, into the past, miles away from where we actually are, and often to the worst-case scenario — can be like herding cats. People and thoughts are entities which are inherently uncontrollable.

Speaking of entities which are inherently uncontrollable, there’s cats. Yesterday, I didn’t close the front door correctly after we got home after food shopping amongst many unherded people. When the door came open later, our cat Joan (who used to live unherded on the streets of Tennessee with her sisters and lots of kittens) got out. My husband Michael, who was on the phone, noticed the door was open and his unherded thoughts went to disaster (a cat has escaped and is GONE!) but Joan, unherded, walked back in. When Joan jumped up on the sofa next to me, my unherded thoughts tried to figure out why she felt so cold.

We’re all very relieved that Joan didn’t take off — unherded and unheard from again — for warm Tennessee.

Now I’m going to herd my images for today into some sort of order.

I assume that someone on Twitter is going to herd those days into a single celebration, like “I’m going to go to the dentist wearing a dress after getting cavities from eating frozen food, oreo cookies, and white chocolate cheesecake, and getting a medal for finishing all those.”

Here’s what I find on YouTube when I search for “herding cats.”

Now I’ve got to go herd my blood-testing equipment into line and check my INR. Feel free to herd any thoughts and feelings you have about this post into a comment, below.

Thanks to all those who help me herd so many things into this daily blog, including YOU.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Day 3298: Hyper-vigilance

Hyper-vigilance is well know to me, both as a therapist and as a person diagnosed with PTSD (because of my hospital experiences when I was a child and living with a very rare heart condition for 68 years).

Because of the pandemic, global warming, racism, economic disparities, and many other complex and constant abuses to our psyches and our bodies, there are very few of us who are not hyper-vigilant these days.

Here is a definition of hyper-vigilance from healthline.com:

Yesterday, when I was at a hospital waiting for a bone scan, I tweeted this as I was trying to take deep breaths and slow down some racing thoughts:

Some people on Twitter responded with gratitude for the thought, others pointed out how hyper-vigilance is not a choice. I work on hyper-vigilance every day, and I understand.

Do you see hyper-vigilance in my other images for today?

I think our phones add to our hyper-vigilance, do you?

I want to be vigilant (and not hyper) in wishing a happy birthday to my first husband (and father of our son, Aaron), who reads this blog. Happy birthday, Leon Dave, and many more!

Because of my vigilance in sharing music I love in this blog, here’s one of my favorite Thomas Dolby tunes:

Thanks to all who are vigilant enough to get to the bottom of this “Hyper-vigilance” blog post, including YOU!

Categories: life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 20 Comments

Day 3173: Ampersands

Today is National Ampersand Day & the second day of Rosh Hashana & the day I go back to see the Ear Nose & Throat people at the hospital about my nosebleed caused by my anticoagulant medications & our new & adorable cat Joan trying to wake me up by scratching my nose & so much more.

Yesterday I started working again after my 2-week vacation & people were very glad to reconnect in an online therapy group & had a lot to say.

Today, as always, I want to welcome all thoughts & feelings including happiness & sadness & fear & anger & despair & hope & so on.

Here are photos & screen captures for today’s post.

How are you going to celebrate & otherwise mark this precious & unique day?

Last night, when we were eating this delicious & nutritious vegetarian chili …

… my husband & cook Michael & my son Aaron & I were talking about the many ways you can get chili in Cincinnati, including with cheese & beans & spaghetti.

Here’s “Ampersand” by They Might Be Giants (a band that Aaron & Michael & I saw in person years & years ago).

Thanks & more thanks to all who visit this blog, including you & you & you & YOU!

Categories: life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism, staying healthy | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

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