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.See all posts »
Kind Words that Warmed my Wounded Heart
Before my heart attack (and before the five babies) I was a model in the Philadephia area fashion scene.
I worked many fashion shows and I loved every second of it. My big break came when I was chosen to shoot with a world-renowned photographer named Tony Ward. This was, to say the least, an honor. I was so excited that I couldn't sleep for days.
The photo shoot was everything that I imagined and I carried that memory with me for years.
After my heart attack (20 years later) I was able to reach out to Tony Ward through social media and thank him for that experience. I told him about my heart attack and he became interested. He invited me to -- get this -- do another shoot with him! I was amazed. I am no longer the young woman that he orginally photographed, and on top of that I had this scar on my chest from my difibrillator implant.
When I told him about the scar not only did he not mind, he decided to have it photographed and featured on his website.
When the day came for us to shoot I felt the same way that I felt some 20 years prior...like an excited school girl.
I was surrounded by make up artists, hair stylists, lights, and equiptment. I was super nervous. I couldn't believe that Tony Ward wanted to feature me and my story on his website, which typically features current events and fashion or editorial photography.
When I was finished getting everything primped and ready, I walked over to Tony and he did his look over to be sure I was ready to be photographed. He placed his hand under my chin and said "Despite all that you have been through there isn't a line on your face. I still feel the spirit of that girl that I photographed 20 years ago."
Those words were music to my ears. I remembered sitting in the Intensive Care Unit four years prior and wondering what my life was going to be like after hearing that my heart was severely damaged due to my massive heart attack. I didn't know what the future would hold.
I hadn't done the best job in the beginning of taking care of my skin mainly because I didn't have the energy nor the time.
I was 34 when I had the heart attack and I felt like I lost the years that it took me to get up, conquer the depression, and regain control of my life. When I was finally ready to begin my life again, it was four years later. It was like I had awoken from a coma to see this woman who aged from 34 to 38 over night.
To have Tony Ward say that I hadn't chaged meant a lot to me. Those kind words ring in my ear like beautiful church bells on a Sunday morning. They had great power and made me smile -- as I will everytime I look at those pictures and think of his kind words.
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