Go Red for Women with Me!! – February 05, 2009

Sometimes you’ll find things here which are not particularly related to Real Estate.  This is one of those times.

January 30th, 2009 marks 4 years since my beautiful, amazing Mother in-law was stolen by a heart attack, only days after her 60th birthday.  We never saw it coming.  I miss her so much.  She had an EKG just 6 weeks prior, as part of routine pre-op procedure, for a minor surgery.  No red flags were waived, and there was no discussion of imminent danger largely because symptoms of heart disease are quite different in women than men.  Know this – what you don’t know can KILL you.

The most important things I can share with you today are:

  • Heart disease is the #1 KILLER of WOMEN!
  • Women experience very different symptoms than men!
  • YOU can control your risk for heart disease!
  • YOU MUST be your biggest advocate and insist on further testing if you feel there is a problem not being address by routine methods

The passing of my Mother in-law brought this home very loud and clear.  Looking back, she would not be the only woman in my life impacted by this disease.  A heart attack stole my dear high school friend, at the very young age of 23.  She had a beautiful 6 month old daughter, married for almost 2 years and a whole lifetime of memories to make.  Sadly, she never got the chance.  This was many years ago, and it was very rare for women to be considered as candidates for a heart attack.  I often wonder what would have been.

Just a year ago, another dear friend became her own advocate, ultimately saving her life.  She wasn’t feeling very well and went to the doctor.  They ran routine tests, advised her to get some rest, and told her that if she didn’t feel better, further testing would be available.  However, this testing would be expensive and likely not covered by insurance.   She left, still feeling that something just wasn’t right.  She decided not to wait and requested the additional testing, sooner rather than later.  She wondered if she was making much adieu about nothing and spending too much money, all the way up to checking in at the doctor’s office.  Upon check-in, she learned that her insurance wouldn’t cover the $750.00 procedure.  She almost walked away, but decided to pay up and do it anyway.  I’ll tell you right now – that decision saved her life!  After the test, she was sent home to wait until the following week when the doctor would have results.   About an hour later, she received a call from the doctor’s office with instructions to report immediately to the hospital for admission.   She spent a week in the hospital to address issues with blockages and break the many clots which had filled her lungs.  Had she not insisted on the additional testing, she would likely have had a stroke or heart attack before her next appointment.  YOU MUST be your own advocate!

For each of these stories, there are thousands more.  We often delay doctor visits and dismiss smaller symptoms, especially while caring for others.  YOU can avoid becoming a statistic, or even help save a friend.  Education, awareness and ACTION can greatly reduce the risk of heart disease and save lives.

Education:

Awareness:

  • WEAR RED on Friday, February, 5 2010 for National Go Red Day
  • Tell a friend to join you in WEARING RED.
  • Share Heart Healthy recipes with a friend.

Action:

Stand up and support our mothers, daughters, wives, sisters, girlfriends, aunts, nieces, neighbors and friends.  Stand up and steal the power from this disease.  Stand up and WEAR RED for Women!

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