Posts Tagged With: living with congenital heart disease

Day 850: Drowning in the sea of ____.

Because I never learned how to swim, perhaps it’s easy for me to feel like I’m drowning in seas, sometimes.

Because, in four days,  I’m having surgery — which could prevent my very unusual heart from drowning in the sea of heart failure  — I could be drowning, now, in the sea of:

  • anxiety,
  • fear,
  • worry, and
  • other uncomfortable feelings.

However, I am staying bouyant, well enough, to notice the many different  seas all around me.

Here’s the sea of music I was pleasantly drowning in yesterday morning:

As I was drowning happily in the musical sea of Donald Fagen, Boz Scaggs, and the rest of the New York Rock and Soul Review‘s “Drowning in the Sea of Love,” I drowned in the sea of …

… hot dog rolls, near Fenway Park, and

… trees, in the Longwood Medical area of Boston, Massachusetts.

Then, I did a therapy group at work, where people talked about drowning in the seas of

  • financial worries,
  • medical problems,
  • confusion,
  • isolation,
  • troubled minds,
  • judgmental people,
  • self-doubt,
  • guilt,
  • shame, and
  • other overwhelming problems.

However, the mutual support of the group kept everybody afloat for a good while.

Later that day, I was drowning in the sea of Starbucks


where I said goodbye to the wonderful barrista, Erin.


— who also works at Starbucks and who was trying not to drown  in the sea of beverage orders — helped me not drown in the sea of sadness about Erin’s leaving by giving me this:

It’s a new chocolate cookie straw at Starbucks, which was soon

drowning in the sea of chai tea misto, in my office.

Those flyers —  on my desk, next to the tea misto —  are for a Group Therapy Conference in June, where I’ll be drowning in the sea of other group therapists and amazing learning.  I will be giving a workshop there on June 6 about my therapy groups, so I hope I won’t be drowning in the sea of  presentation jitters.

Yesterday, I was also drowning in the sea of


construction work,


cupcakes, and

pet supplies.

Don’t these guinea pigs

look like they’re drowning in a sea of colored paper?

Here’s to everybody staying above water for another day!

I am drowning in the sea of gratitude for everything I witnessed yesterday and for you — of course! — for drowning in the sea of this blog post, here and now.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , | 36 Comments

Day 832: Why I felt better yesterday

I felt better yesterday because — for the first time in 5 months — the weather in Boston was temperate AND sunny.




I felt better yesterday because I got to spend some quality time with my 17-year-old son, Aaron, who is leaving this Wednesday for a 10-day school trip to Italy. Here are some shots I took during that quality time:


I felt better yesterday because I watched on YouTube, again, a video that Aaron and his friend Cameron made, several months ago, which included an original song and a surprise appearance by my boyfriend Michael, with lasagna. I felt better watching that video because I always love witnessing how cool and creative my son is.

I may not be cool and creative enough to include that video in this here post  (so that you might feel better too), but I shall do my best.

I felt better yesterday because I was able to post on Facebook that my high school class of 1970 had a time and place for its 45th reunion, next September.

I felt better yesterday because, despite several cardiologists believing that my very unusual and difficult-to-figure-out heart is on an irreversible and perhaps rapidly increasing path towards deterioration, eventually necessitating heart valve replacement and/or a heart transplant …













… I felt more than better, yesterday. I felt GREAT.

Indeed, if you had seen me taking any of those pictures above, you might have felt better too, because — as a 62-year-old survivor with the extraordinarily rare condition of congenitally corrected transpositon of the great arteries (cctga) and  “on the cutting edge” (which is not referring to my surgery next month) of longevity — I was

  • smiling,
  • singing,
  • dancing, and/or
  • skipping, for heaven’s sake.

I feel better now, just thinking about that.

What helps you feel better?

Here’s some music I heard yesterday which helped me feel even better, from Stephen Sondheim’s rarely produced and early musical, The Frogs:

I hope to feel better today, too, especially if I can figure out how to include Cameron and Aaron’s video in this Feel Better Post.

Whether or not I’m good enough to include that video here, I feel I’ve bettered this post enough to publish it, already.

Okay!  I can now include the video of Cameron and Aaron’s song, thanks to help from Aaron (which always helps me feel better):

Feel-good thanks to Aaron, Cameron, Michael, my high school classmates, Stephen Sondheim, John Stamos, smiling creatures everywhere, the beautiful Boston weather, my caring and competent cardiologists, my very unusual heart,  and everybody and everything that contributed to my feeling better yesterday. And special thanks to you — of course! — for visiting and helping me feel better, today.

Categories: inspiration, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , | 78 Comments

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