It's very hard for me to believe that it is September. The summer started out so crazy with all my heart issues that it made the rest of the summer just zip by as I recovered and tried to catch up!
I realized that I never posted after going to my cardiologist appointment back in July. It went very well, and we were very happy with this doctor. I was diagnosed with mitral valve prolapse, which is basically a valve in my heart that does not work properly all the time. It is a very common condition and easily treatable. I was given the option of taking a medication daily to prevent any future episodes or taking a medication when I begin having an episode. Because I am young and otherwise very healthy, I chose the as-needed option. I wasn't real keen on taking heart medication everyday at the age of 33. I'll now need annual visits to the cardiologist and occasional stress tests, but all in all, things are good.
I'm convinced that God has used this heart issue to make me slow down. There's nothing like a scare with the ol' ticker to make you sit up and pay attention! Exercise, diet, and stress-prevention all play a part in preventing future episodes with mitral valve prolapse. We do pretty well with eating a low-fat diet, but the exercise and stress-prevention were pretty hit or miss up until these recent months. I am now up at 5:30 am most every morning to have my quiet time for about an hour and then go walking for 30 minutes or so. If I didn't need sleep (ha!) I would be getting up even earlier because I would like to have even more time to do both of those things. But right now 5:30am is as early as I can manage.
I am also doing a better job of preventing stress and listening to my body when I need rest. I realize at those times when I get stressed out the most, I am trusting God the least. I also realize that the world will not stop if I lay down for 30 minutes after lunch to rest, and fortunately my kids are good and allow me to do this without having to worry about them turning the house upside down!
One of my favorite things that I've begun doing--and it's such a little thing, but I love it--is making myself a pot of tea in the wee hours of the morning. Not just a cup or mug, but a pot. I bought a cute little teapot and teacup set. Not anything fancy--just red pottery, red being my all-time favorite color. Every morning when I get up, I make myself a pot of tea and carry it on a tray to "my chair" where I meet God when all else is dark and quiet in my house. I have my tea while I'm reading my Bible, doing my Bible study and talking to God about my day. To me, it's a treat--something I do because it makes me smile to do so.
I'm learning to do more of those things that make me smile. They may not be significant or noticeable to others, but they make my heart smile and brighten my day. Like picking up a bouquet of flowers in the produce section of the grocery store and bringing them home to one of my pretty vases that up until now just sat in the china cabinet collecting dust. Fresh flowers never fail to put a smile on my face. How about you?
God is good. Life is not always. But God is.