My Birthday Wish After a Recent Health Scare


Today, December 2nd, is my 47th birthday. I can hardly believe it. Part of me still feels like I’m in my 30s.

I have been struggling for years with many chronic illnesses, but my recent health scare has changed me forever.

I was diagnosed with multiple bilateral pulmonary emboli at the end of September 2016. I am still going to the hematologist often and taking blood thinners daily. I am still trying to come to grips with what happened. I am still praying I will fully recover and get through the overwhelming anxiety this has caused.

I am still dealing with the what-ifs.

What if I did not pay attention to my symptoms and go to the emergency room?

What if I did not get there in time?

What if the emboli was too large for the blood thinners to work quickly and save my life?

What if the doctors didn’t figure out what was wrong?

What if my children and husband had to live without me?

This birthday is different.

After going through a life-threatening event, everything looks and feels disparate to me. The sky seems bluer, the trees seem more colorful, and my children’s faces couldn’t be more beautiful.

Yes, this birthday is different because it almost didn’t come.

I could have died instantly in September, but now I live on. For myself, for my family and for my friends. And, as I sit here typing this, I am thinking about what is really important to me. It has never been more clear: spending time with the people I love, and helping others.

Treasure the ones you love. Help those in need if you can. Make a difference right here and now. All it takes is a smile, a helping hand and a loving heart.

Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there. Show kindness to someone in need. Help lift someone’s spirits. Buy someone a meal or a cup of coffee if you can, or donate to a worthwhile organization dedicated to serving others. Donate your time. Aid someone crossing the street, or shovel their sidewalk. Make that phone call. Look for a new job. Look for happiness. Treat everyone with respect. It doesn’t take much effort to make someone’s day and treat the ones we love well.

My birthday wish is that we will all devote more time to doing these things. To making those we love happy, and to helping those in need if we can.

If we all do this, the world can be a much better place. Love can prevail.

And each time I blow out my birthday candles, I will remember this wish, and I will hope it comes true.

Follow this journey on Poetologie.

We want to hear your story. Become a Mighty contributor here.


Find this story helpful? Share it with someone you care about.


Related to Other

Donald Trump speaking.

Donald Trump Picks Rep. Tom Price to Led U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Georgia representative and retired orthopedic surgeon Tom Price will be Donald Trump’s pick for secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Price currently serves as the chairman of the House Budget Committee and has opposed Obamacare since it was introduced in 2009. As HHS secretary, Price would oversee Medicare,Medicaid and the Affordable Care [...]
Aileen and Braxton.

When My Daughter Asked, 'Do You Hope This Baby Is Normal?'

Several years ago, the thought of having another baby after all we’d been through with our son Braxton was simply out of the question. I was too scared and nervous to even entertain the thought. As friends of ours who also have children with special needs began expecting a child, I started to think more [...]

What You May Not Realize About "That" Kid This Thanksgiving

What you may not realize when You Have “That” Kid at the Thanksgiving Table.
selena gomez makes a speech at the AMAs

In Passionate AMA Speech, Selena Gomez Shares a Message for Anyone Who Feels Broken

At Sunday night’s 2016 American Music Awards, Selena Gomez had a message for anyone who feels broken: “If you’re broken, you don’t have to stay broken.” Gomez won this year’s award for Favorite Pop/Rock Female Artist. In a tear-jerking acceptance speech (you can watch below), she said: In 2014, this stage was actually the first time that [...]