–against the night, ari shine


I am a congenital heart defect [CHD] survivor — I had it easy. My defect, an opening between the aorta and pulmonary artery, closed by itself shortly after I was born, with the only lasting effect a slight and “innocent” heart murmur. Friends have shared stories of their CHD experiences — one who was not aware of her defect until adulthood, another who has memories and scars from childhood, but still needs to pay close attention to cardiac symptoms on a daily basis and check in with her doctors regularly. We are CHD survivors.

One of my best friends from grade two forward did not have this experience. She had multiple surgeries on her heart from the time she was young . . . and died suddenly and unexpectedly when she was twelve–in the seventh grade.  There is still work to be done.

My friend Mike is a young person living with congestive heart failure, living with day-to-day uncertainty of what will come next, and when.  Waiting for answers, and continuing on with his life while he and his team try to determine the next steps.  Longing for answers and options.

This weekend, my best friend’s dad had a moderate-to-massive heart attack.  Things are rough for them, so please pray or send vibes their way.  Life will never be the same for her dad or their family. There is a lot of desperation, a lot of prayer, a lot of tears . . . and a lot of hope. The story is still being written.

Our stories are all different.  Yet we live with “hearts of gold that don’t always work right“.

. . . Without anything to say about it. It has little to nothing to do with our choice, it’s all chance.  Our hearts choose our realities.

We do our best to live.  Hope. Love. Run. Laugh.

We do our best to fight.

February is Heart Month.

Join the fight.

7 thoughts on ““we got hearts of gold, but they don’t always work right”

  1. Great post, Kerri. I had no idea that we have heart issues in common. Learn something new every day, I guess. I love that quote “we got hearts of gold, but they don’t always work right”. Describes us well. Many thanks for the shout out, too.

    Lots of love, my friend!

    1. I love the quote too — so good. I actually used that quote tweeting about CHD week earlier this month and the artist, Ari Shine, RTed me :].

      Yep, definitely another thing we have in common! My CHD isn’t something I mention a lot, simply because it doesn’t affect me on a day to day basis and I honestly didn’t know about it until I read my NICU records a couple years ago.

      Keep up all the hard work, buddy!

  2. I lost a good friend to a congenital heart defect at age 42. The defect was not observed until she had a massive heart attack at about age 40. Unfortunately, it was not the sort of defect that could be repaired by anything short of a heart transplant, and her health deteriorated before that could become a possibility. She was also a cancer survivor, a single mom, and lived with type 2 diabetes. She left behind her mother and a 20-year-old daughter. She’s one of the many reasons I wear a Red Dress pin…

  3. I don’t know this illness, but I’m asthmatic too and sometimes I have too fast heart rythm. I live in Poland, in the Cracow – big city in Southern part of my country. If You are interested, I invite You to my blog: http://www.zycie-i-droga.blogspot.com. Your blog is really good. My is in Polish, but there is translator to English.

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