Heart to Heart
Heart to Heart

After surviving a rare coronary artery dissection and massive heart attack while nine months pregnant, Nefertari has devoted her life to uplifting other heart patients and promoting heart health awareness.

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Grocery Shopping: Only if I Have To

Grocery shopping with a weakened heart can be a challenge. Although I know that as a person with a heart condition, I should seek help and accept support whenever it’s offered, there are times when I have to get the job done on my own. Sometimes, I have to go grocery shopping.

As I approach the front entrance, I can smell the fresh baked goods. The old saying "Never go grocery shopping while you’re hungry" is great advice for those of us trying to stay away from unhealthy foods. 

I turn to my right and face a line-up of bottled drinks. This is where my issue begins. Before my heart condition, I was able to go into the grocery story, quickly grab what I needed, and get out—no problem! 

Now, on some days, it can be a challenge. First, I have to go get the cart (this sounds simple enough), lift the items (heavy bottles of apple juice, detergents, bags of flour, etc.) off the shelves, and lower them into the cart. After traveling up and down the aisles, I make my way to the cash register.

But it’s not over yet. I then must lift all of the items (heavy bottles of apple juice, detergents, bags of flour, etc…ugh!) back out of the cart and hoist them up onto the conveyor belt. Then I load them into bags, one by one, because by this time, my poor little heart is begging for a break. 

I place the bags into the shopping cart (tired yet?) and although each one weighs about five pounds, at this point, they feel like 20. After filling the cart, I must push it all the way to my car and transfer all of the bags into the trunk. 

Then drive home, which is the easy part.

When I get home, I must take all the bags back out of the trunk and carry them into the house. I unpack all the bags and (finally!) put the items away in the cabinets…PHEW! 

I did this every week with ease before my heart attack. I never realized how much effort it took just to purchase the items needed for my family. But now, after my heart attack, I realize how fortunate I was to have a healthy heart.

Living with heart disease can make you take a second look at things that you once took for granted. I’m thankful for my second chance at life and I’ll do whatever it takes to make my heart as healthy as it can be.

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Tags: Learning Limitations , Performing Chores with a Failing Heart

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About the Author

After surviving a heart attack, Nefertari has devoted her life to promoting heart health awareness.

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