Wednesday, February 2, 2011

A Tribute:

My great grandma's name was
Hazel Christine Berryhill.
I don't know very much about her.
She died from a heart attack when she was only 39 years old.
My grandma was only 6.
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This is my Grandma Geneva.
What I remember of her is that she was perfect.
Anyone that knew her would tell you the same thing.
She took care of me when I had chickenpoxs.
And she spoiled me rotten.
Most of my summers as a child were spent at her house in AZ.
She had suffered from heart problems for years.
I remember when I was really little we found her passed out on our rock floor. 
She would do that a lot when she would have "one of her attacks."
I remember going to a few of her doctors appointments where they would hook tons of cables to her.  She looked like a robot.  She would wear them for a couple of days to see how her heart was doing.
She had a pacemaker and she did the clinical trials for Coumadin (Warfarin) before they were very popular.
She passed away when I was only 7 years old and she was only 51.
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This is my Mommy.
I think she is pretty amazing.
She has taught me everything I know about life, the universe and everything.
She is also my very best friend.
 When I was a Junior in High School (2004), she had a heart attack.
She was only 43.
We didn't even know that she was sick until month or so afterwards.
It wasn't until her spleen and gallbladder became infected that they realized that her heart had also been destroyed with clots.
She had a pacemaker/defibrillator "installed" and started taking coumadin too keep her blood thin...along with a long list of other medicines.
Her health still slowly declined.
Every day I worried about her.  I knew she didn't feel well and I couldn't do anything about it.  It scared me every day.

On May 14th, 2010 a miracle happened.
My mom received a heart transplant.
We don't know who the donor was, but we do know that they saved my mom's life.
That person broke a chain of literal heart break.
My mom is a survivor.
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Most people don't even know that they are at risk for heart disease.
It is a silent killer.
You would have never known my mom was sick just looking at her.

Did you know...
90% of women have one or more risk factors for developing heart disease.
There is an average of one death every 39 seconds (2,200 deaths per day) due to cardiovascular disease.
Heart disease is the #1 killer among women over 20 years old.
1 in 3 people are living with some type of cardiovascular disease.
More women die from heart disease than the next 4 causes of death COMBINED Including ALL FORMS OF CANCER.
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Get informed.
Get tested.
Stay Healthy.

5 comments:

Lene said...

That is a beautiful tribute.

Janiece said...

Thank you Sunshine, this post is heart touching.

tammy said...

What a beautiful post. I'm so glad you get to have your mom around longer.

Pooh said...

what wonderful memories

Kayleen said...

What wonderful ladies!