Teresa Kresheck - Heart health during a major crisis
Teresa has lived with a fast heartbeat known as tachycardia for nearly 30 years. She shares lessons she has learned along the way.
Right now we are in the middle of a very scary, but too real-world situation. We are in a pandemic. The entire world is on some form of lockdown for our own safety against an invisible and very deadly predator that has no cure and can attack anyone at any time. Being in a lockdown means that most forms of business are running at minimal capacity if at all. Chances are your doctor may only be seeing patients on a very high risk or emergency basis until further notice. That means the all too real possibility that we are going to have to go without health check-ups or vital appointments until this crisis has been contained in some form. That doesn't seem possible right now. But as terrifying as this all seems, life still will go on for us all and that means we are going to have to do everything we can on our own to survive. That includes trying our best to keep our heart health in a good state.
As a person who suffers from tachycardia, this time is particularly hard. Every day is filled with monumental stress. These situations will naturally cause me anxiety and fear. And though I do take a beta-blocker, it can't contain my rapid heartbeat when it all seems to be too much. On top of that, unless I have a real emergency, I can't count on my doctor at this time and I understand that. Being on lockdown in my home leaves me few options but it is not impossible to find peace and calm within your home.
Keeping a sense of calm within our homes can help us keep a sense of calm within our bodies. With this pandemic, we're told to keep ourselves and our homes as clean as possible. I don't know about you but having my home really clean and organized gives me a very satisfying and calming sense of well being and right now, we really do have the time to get our homes in order. And keeping ourselves clean is simple enough. It feels good to take a long, hot shower so go ahead and indulge. Give yourself a few extra moments just to feel the warmth and breathe slowly. Let yourself believe you are doing all you can to protect yourself. Or have a bath, put out candles, turn on your favorite song. Go ahead, no one will tell on you and in the end, you will feel amazing, calm, centered. Your heart will most likely be beating slower and you won't feel the stress going on outside for even just a little while. That's a good, powerful thing.
Maybe you can get into your backyard and do some much-needed Spring clean up there. You can feel the warmer sunshine on your skin for a little while and you will love making your yard a place you can come out to and enjoy. Maybe wipe down the barbecue and have a nice dinner outside (weather permitting) with your kids. Don't be foolish and try to entertain right now except maybe by Facetime or Skype. We all miss our families but we do not need to expose them or ourselves to the virus, even if we all might think we're all safe. Don't risk it. Make the time to learn social media now if you never have. Call your kids, your parents, friends. Keep in contact. It makes a world of difference during this difficult time if we know our loved ones are all safe and sound.
And lastly, give yourself permission to do things for yourself that maybe other times you wouldn't do. Go ahead, bake that cake, have some. Make that wonderful new dish you have always wanted to try but seemed too rich to eat. But also, walk up and down your stairs more than a few times that day. Go outside and lay a blanket down and do a little yoga. Turn on some music and sing and dance your heart out. Feel good. Take the moment as your own. We have to right now and it's completely okay. Read that book you always wanted to get to but never had the time. Learn a language, sew a dress for Summer. The simple fact is, we need to keep ourselves calm and relaxed now. This pandemic is very serious, very frightening. But we can and will get through this if we follow the rules set before us. And though strict and seemingly hard to follow, it allows us the chance to open our minds and try new things from the safety of our own homes.
Explore, feel free and daring. Be challenged. Be Calm. Be Safe.