“The greatest wealth is health” Virgil
For as long as I can remember, I’ve been a holistic health enthusiast; nonetheless, last October I nearly died when my heart’s mitral valve chords unexpectedly broke. I will be eternally grateful to my extraordinary medical team, who saved my life.
My four-part blog series, published by the American Heart Association, delves into detail about my open heart surgery and what to expect should you find yourself in a similar situation, along with advice from my own experience. Following are links to each of these articles:
Part 1: A survivor’s story
Part 2: A survivor’s advice for patients
Part 3: A Survivor’s advice to patients – side effects of surgery at home
Part 4: A survivor’s advice for caregivers
My perspective is rather unique . . . you’ll find credible advice based on my personal experiences. I write candidly about my injuries and challenges; my mission is to passionately seek out optimal holistic healthcare approaches which heal the body, mind and spirit, and to share my experiences to benefit others.
Prior to my near death encounter, I held the illusion of entitlement to a long and healthy life. Three out of four of my grandparents had lived into their nineties – Grandma Ann to 99 years old – all in good physical and mental health. I’ve had quite a bit of time for self-reflection . . . nowadays, I strive to cherish every moment.
I was an athlete throughout my primary school years, competing in track and field events, as a sprinter. I was also an avid gymnast; floor exercise was my favorite! My family owned a bicycle store, so biking was also an integral component of my childhood. We regularly summered in the nearby Adirondack Mountains, which offered the ample opportunity to practice another of my hobbies; swimming.
As an adult, I’ve participated regularly in a wide range of aerobic and weight training activities. I’ve been an avid Yogi for decades, and meditate daily. Now that my weight-lifting is medically restricted while my sternum regains its strength, I’ve just begun Barre classes. I hope to develop that sought after ballet body!
Numerous hobbies and interests keep me busy; my favorite activities include spa, travel, photography, whole-food cooking and baking, sustainable eco-friendly living, and immersing myself in a good book, film or play.
My career has been focused in the arena of marketing. I’ve worked with and for advertising agencies, billion dollar companies to independent entrepreneurs, for-profit and not-for-profit organizations, on international, national, regional and local campaigns and have been lucky to be recognized through multiple industry awards. I am available for consulting, guest writing and speaking engagements.
My education includes a M/A in Advertising from Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Public Communications and B/A degrees in Film and in Journalism from Hofstra University.
Your comments, constructive feedback and suggestions for future topics are always appreciated and I look forward to reading them! There is an opportunity to comment at the conclusion of each post, or alternatively, simply visit the Contact Debra page, fill out the form and hit send.
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