Posts Tagged With: living with congenital heart issues

Day 1312: Momentum

Let me take a moment to affect the early momentum of this momentous post by defining momentum.

[moh-men-tuh m]

noun, plural momenta [moh-men-tuh], momentums.
1. force or speed of movement; impetus, as of a physical object or course of events:
The car gained momentum going downhill. Her career lost momentum after two unsuccessful films.
2.Also called linear momentum. Mechanics. a quantity expressing the motion of a body or system, equal to the product of the mass of a body and its velocity, and for a system equal to the vector sum of the products of mass and velocity of each particle in the system.
3. Philosophy. moment.

Can be confused
memento, momentum.

How will it affect the momentum of this post if I

  • confess that — like momento and momentum —  I can be confused, too?
  • share that I associate the word “momentum” with political races?
  • state that I am developing momenta in feeling more positive and hopeful about the future?

How will it affect the momentum of this post if I show you this photo from yesterday?


How will my other photos from yesterday affect the momentum?










I’m developing momentum to sing at an Open Mic tomorrow evening. Recording myself singing the song a capella, this morning, is part of that momentum.


How’s your momentum, here and now?

I’ve got the momenta to thank all those who helped me create this post and you — of course! — for reading it.



Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, taking a risk | Tags: , , , , , | 17 Comments

Day 909: I Heart Accuracy

Two days ago, somebody came to therapy wearing this t-shirt:

I ❤  accuracy,  but I would never wear that t-shirt. To be accurate, my heart (because of my congenital heart condition) does not look like that.

To be accurate, I ❤ many things, including:

  • Accuracy
  • My heart
  • Other people’s hearts
  • My son, Aaron
  • My boyfriend, Michael
  • Blogging
  • My readers
  • Spontaneity
  • Walking
  • My work, as a psychotherapist 
  • My friend Jeanette, whom I met at Film School in Boston in the 1980s and who lives too far away (in Philadelphia), which I do not <3.

Yesterday, I spent 1 hour walking, while my son was at his keyboard  lesson in Arlington, Massachusetts.

Then, I spent 5  hours with Jeanette.

❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤

I ❤ these photos:

I ❤ Spy Pond.

I ❤ signs.

I ❤ green and shadows.

I ❤ several things about that picture. 

 I ❤ that paw print and “Run!”

I ❤ loving couples.

I ❤ celebrating pride (at 11:30 or any time). 

I ❤ “Turn Around.”

I ❤ “Still movin? That’s right you are!”

I ❤ the 4th of July and how my late father used to ask people this question:

Does England have a 4th of July?

I ❤ people taking naps, although I usually don’t take them.

I ❤ Jeanette.

I ❤ Jeanette’s smile.

I ❤ those t-shirts, but I didn’t ❤ them enough to buy them.

I ❤ the way Jeanette and I riffed about the big-headed bird on that moving van.

I ❤ Jeanette,  at our home.

I ❤ Jeanette and our cat Oscar.

I ❤ Aaron, Michael, Oscar, and Jeanette (l. to r.)

I ❤  Oscar and Aaron.

To repeat, I ❤  Accuracy.

What do you <3? I would ❤ it if you’d let us know.

I ❤ that Neil Young is singing “Heart of Gold” on YouTube.

I do NOT ❤ how WordPress keeps leaving off parts of this post, as I’m trying to publish it.

I ❤ thanking Jeanette, Aaron, Michael, Oscar, my late father, Arlington, Belmont, people who show their hearts, Neil Young, and you — of course! — no matter what you <3. 

Categories: friendship, love, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , | 31 Comments

Day 764: What I needed

Out of all Seven Hundred and Whats-it  daily posts I’ve published here, yesterday’s post was one of the most difficult to write.


I needed to write a post about some cheery occasions — my 62nd birthday AND the home team’s Super Bowl victory AND a day off from work — BUT I wasn’t feeling very cheery.

Why wasn’t I feeling very cheery?

Don’t get me started!

Too late. I’m started. Now I need to show you this list:

  1. I was very sleep deprived.
  2. I was recovering from the flu.
  3. Snow was piling up outside, in a major way.
  4. Not to offend any  snow-o-philes among you, but I’m at a point in my life when I am — despite my preference for non-judgmental living  —  HATING snow and cold (especially when I’m not feeling well).
  5. There was very little appetizing food I could find.
  6.  I felt physically lousy.
  7. I was “alone” when I was writing, because my son was with his father and my bf Michael, who also seemed to be coming down with the flu, was asleep upstairs.
  8. Even though I am often praised for my “good and brave attitude in the face of difficult experiences,” I seem to be “primed”– in certain ways — to be disappointed on my birthday (and you can read here how this played out last year).
  9. Let’s face it … just like anybody else, sometimes I’m just a

Debbie Downer


(I found this image I needed here)

Sad Sack

Cranky Yankee

Pissy Missy

Also, because authenticity is so friggin’ important to me, I needed to somehow write yesterday’s post from a real and authentic place.

So, yes, I had a particularly difficult post-writing assignment on my plate yesterday. And, even though that post, when I read it now, seems fairly simple, I know that it needed HOURS of slow and arduous slogging. (Much like what we New Englanders need to do, these days, to get through all the friggin’ snow there is.)

Now, I’m not complaining about the effort I needed to put into yesterday’s post, nor the result.  As is true with every one of the Seven Hundred and Yikers daily posts I’ve written here, it HELPED me to write it.

So what post would it help me to write, today? What else do I need to do, here?

Above, when I linked “Cranky Yankee” and “Pissy Missy”  to my post last year about “Stinky Pinkies” (the game I used to play in my family, growing up), I couldn’t help but notice the main title there: “Gratitude Attitude.”

Gratitude Attitude is always something we need, isn’t it?

So here’s the gratitude list I need, right now. I’m grateful that:

  1. My childhood friend Deb, who now lives in California and reads this blog, took the time to call me yesterday, at a moment when I was feeling especially blue. It was just what I needed.
  2. Many, many other people reached out to me  with birthday wishes, through all sorts of media. It was just what I needed.
  3. My sister called and we had a long, helpful talk about (a) our late parents and (b) why I so easily feel completely alone, powerless, unlovable and frightened even when I’m safe and loved. It was just what I needed.
  4. Even when I was feeling at my lowest yesterday, my instincts for healing were there, and I composed this list:

Things I REALLY Needed to Hear When I was Young, But Didn’t

  1. You have an amazing mind.

  2. You are  smart.

  3. You are beautiful.

  4. You do not deserve to suffer alone.

  5. You are kind.

  6. You are talented musically.

  7. You are funny.

  8. You are graceful.

  9. Every part of you is welcome.

  10. You do not have to be perfect to be loved.

  11. It is okay to be angry.

  12. It is okay to be sad.

  13. It is okay to be afraid.

  14. It’s okay to be impatient.

  15. I will protect you.

  16. I will fight for your rights.

I need to be clear, right now, that all of this is no indictment of my parents, who were wonderful people. As my sister pointed out in our conversation yesterday (and as I constantly need to re-discover, throughout my life), my congenital heart condition and time growing up in hospitals (without my parents presence) resulted in my “sensitivity” and tendency to feel like a

Debbie Downer

Sad Sack

Cranky Yankee

Pissy Missy.

I also have a tendency to repeat myself and to be easily distracted, and I’m distracted now.


I need to show you this:

IMG_5110 IMG_5111

Eeeeek!  Snow!!! Not exactly what I needed.

Actually, those photos were taken earlier this morning. Here’s the reality outside, here and now:


Yay!  I’m getting what I needed!  I’ll be able to leave on time today, to return to my work as a group and individual psychotherapist at a Boston hospital.

Which reminds me of my gratitude list, which I had started, above.

Here are more things I need to add to that list, before I leave for work:


Things that rhyme.




The PERFECT birthday card, from Michael. It was just what I needed.

And also, thanks to Michael — I got the PERFECT birthday dinner:

IMG_5105 IMG_5106 IMG_5107


Now, I need a tuna noodle tune to share with you all, but this is the best I can do:

(I found Hot Tuna performing “Somebody to Love” — just when I needed it — here, on YouTube.)

Thanks to Deb, to Michael, to my sister, to my parents, to everybody who reached out to me yesterday when I needed it, to hot tuna of all kinds, and to you — of course! — for all you might need, today.

Categories: personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , | 49 Comments

Day 748: A Salt and Battery

I love puns.  My boyfriend Michael says he strongly dislikes puns, but here’s the truth about Michael:

When Michael makes a pun,  he insists it’s not a pun.

When the rest of the world makes a pun, Michael acts like that’s assault and battery.

Yesterday, Michael and I probably made some puns, but I can’t remember any of them right now, no matter how much I assault and batter my brain trying to remember.

BTBW, here are some random thoughts battering around in my mind about what I’ve written so far:

  • When I was a little kid having surgeries in the hospital, those felt like assault and battery.
  • I am anticipating having heart surgery in the future, but everybody assures me that will NOT feel like assault and battery.
  • Since I’ve been 10 years old, I’ve relied on the batteries in pacemakers to stay alive.
  • I can get nervous/anxious/jumpy/whatever-we-want-to-call-it when regular batteries run down (as they always do), because of the way my mind makes associations.
  • The way my mind makes associations probably helps me make puns AND helps me write the kind of posts I’ve been writing here, every day for the last 747 days.
  • 747 is also a kind of airplane.

download (39)

(Image of 747 found here)

  • I plan to fly out on an airplane to California, with my 16-year-old son, next month.
  • The plane reservations aren’t made yet, which can make me nervous/anxious/jumpy/whatever-we-want-to-call-it, but I have faith that my travel agent/niece Laura will take care of this beautifully, because she always does (including the trips I wrote about here, here, here, and here).
  • When I had to replace some batteries yesterday, my mind/brain/whatever-we-want-to-call-it came up with the title for today’s post.


  • I hope it won’t be photographic assault and battery, now, if I share all the other shots I took yesterday:

IMG_4645 IMG_4646 IMG_4648 IMG_4649 IMG_4650 IMG_4651 IMG_4652 IMG_4653 IMG_4654 IMG_4655

I don’t want to batter you into leaving me a comment about this post, but it would feel like the opposite of assault-and-battery to me, if you commented in any way.

Now, I have to salt-and-batter my brain to come up with a good-enough song to end this post.

I don’t mean to procrastinate, but what would YOU choose as a song for this Salt-and-Battery post?

Okay, here are my associations, leading to the Song Du Jour:

  • “Batter, batter, batter” is something Cameron and Ferris say in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off at Chicago’s Wrigley Field, skipping school for a Cubs baseball game.

That YouTube video of that scene doesn’t have great sound (even though it has over 272,000 views).

Gotta go Twist and Shout on my brand new, pink elliptical!

Thanks to Michael the Boyfriend (who, like Ferris, could be a Fry Cook on Venus), Laura the Niece/Travel Agent, Harley the Cat, Penny the Pen, Ferris and Cameron,  John Hughes the Late Screenwriter and Director,  The Beatles the Group, and You the Reader — of course! — for visiting me, today.

Categories: gratitude, personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 41 Comments

Blog at