Second, on Mother's Day, I told the story of my mother - her passion for cardmaking, how she started our church card ministry and that I "miss her like crazy". Thank you to all of you who have left such kind and caring comments. But there was more to the story that I just didn't want to tell on Mother's Day.
Today is actually the anniversary of my mother's death. She died of a heart attack. What we did not know at the time is how different a woman's heart attack symptoms can be from a man's. My mom actually had her heart attack on Mother's Day. The only symptom was extremely severe back pain, so extreme that my South Dakota farm-stock, never-ever-see-a-doctor-when-you-can-just-tough-it-out mother was actually going to go to a doctor the next day. But she woke up the next day feeling fine so never sought medical care. My mom always overdid things and her back pain could have been related to carrying some heavy boxes the day before, so we didn't think a thing of it. And that's what I want to say today. Take a moment and read this article on heart attack symptoms in women. The article says, "Even though heart disease is the No. 1 killer of women, women often chalk up the symptoms to less life-threatening conditions like acid reflux, the flu or normal aging." This article just briefly mentions back pain but we also don't know what else my mom was feeling - she just wasn't one to talk about her aches and pains. Don't ignore symptoms, but also remember the key word is "extreme" so you don't have to worry every single day. If you have any concerns, also check out Go Red for Women for risk factors, heart healthy foods, lifestyle changes and other actions you can take to increase awareness of and fight against heart disease in women.
And...one last reason....almost a year ago now I asked for advice as to how you were all using your cards. Due to a very negative situation, my family chose to leave our church home of sixteen years, which sadly, also meant leaving the church cardmaking ministry. Your advice poured in but it's taken me this long to move on from the emotions of the situation and, in the meantime, I have created two very large boxes of cards without a home.
So many of you mentioned Operation Write Home. What an amazing group!! Their mission is:
Supporting our nation's armed forces by sending blank handmade greeting cards to write home on, as well as "AnyHero" cards of gratitude to encourage them.OWH recently sent their 2 millionth card! They created a video commemorating the moment - I dare you to watch this without a box of kleenex nearby.
They are a well-organized group that has the process down perfectly. There are rules, but they all make sense - for example, would you have guessed that a single fleck of glitter that drops from a greeting card onto a soldier's uniform could be picked up by night-vision goggle and be dangerous - so NO glitter on the cards!! I already have my OWH stamp for the back of my card. And I have a large quantity of envelopes coming that OWH gets us at a discount. There's also a huge Memorial weekend blog hop that you can check out here. The OWH blogs are full of challenges and care sketches and thank you's from soldiers.
I'm joining in - and this "Miss You Like Crazy" card is my first official card!!
I know...too many words today and too few cards...thanks for sticking with me!
- Stamps: Verve Hope Blooms
- Paper: Papertrey Ink Kraft and Sweet Blush, My Mind's Eye the sweetest thing Lavender 6x6 pad
- Ink: Versamark
- Accessories: My Mind's Eye the sweetest thing Lavender Wood & Chip buttons, Zing white embossing powder, crochet thread
Oh my....this is just beautiful! LOVE those papers and buttons! Wonderful as usual!ReplyDelete
Beautiful card Kim. I like to call this style "classy and elegant." Welcome to OWH. We will enjoy seeing your cards for OWH challenges.ReplyDelete
Your card is just gorgeous. You are inspiring me, because I also rarely do soft colors and vintage. There is hope for me. Your story about your mother was very moving--I am so sorry you lost her.ReplyDelete
My eyes misted over while reading your post; you've shared 'reality' in such a touching, raw, heart-warming sensitive way - the loss of your mom, the loss of your church community, the loss of your card-making group. Yet, you have found 'silver linings' - in your decision to forge ahead (dealing with loss of any kind takes time!) and 'make a difference' in the lives of those who are experiencing their own sense of loss when they leave their families to serve their country. Your card, with the background shared, and the essence of 'missing and loving,' is beautiful. Absolutely beautiful. You are one strong, remarkable, compassionate individual; you are inspiring!ReplyDelete
Beautiful...love the paper and buttons!!ReplyDelete
Love your card and thank you for sharing your story.ReplyDelete
Losing a parent on a holiday is so hard. Your mom on MD, and mine on New Years Day. There is always a reminder... I will tell you that while the pain never goes away, it does get easier to bear. My t&p are with you. Your card looks like a card my mom would have loved. It's beautiful. Really beautiful. And I'm so sorry about your church. That must be so hard, and I hope you've found another to go to and hear about the love that God has for us. Blessings to you today and always. BevReplyDelete
Now that card - seriously beautiful. Love the textures and pallette!ReplyDelete
Love your story. Made me tear up actually.
I thought about the cards to send to the military too, then was distracted, will check it out again.
Take Card Kim
A lovely card, Kim, the colours and papers make it so gentle and warm ... perfect for OWH!ReplyDelete
What a wonderful cause to support with your amazing talent and skills ... from hearing what you've shared with us about your Mom, I'm sure she would have been so proud.
I love this card... Beautiful paper and Message stamp...,
Hugs Sylvie xxx
Kim what a beautiful ,well written post ! I will check out all the links and your post about your mom. I have may OWH card made and ready .ReplyDelete
I LOVE YOUR CARD! Perfection!
Your card is just beautiful and your blog post (and the OWH video) made me cry-so it was a very effective post! :-) How wonderful that your mother inspired your cardmaking--you are certainly a great personal testimony to her love and talent. God bless you!ReplyDelete
Kim, this is so beautiful and what a touching story about your mom. I am so sorry for your lose, it is so hard losing a parent. Your card adorable and I love the soft and vintage look of it, so sweet.ReplyDelete
Kim your post spoke to my heart in so many ways! Loss of those we love changes our day to day world and it is so HUGE!! My heart just really goes out to you! Your card is beautiful and OWH is such a worthy organization! Thanks for sharing this beautiful post!ReplyDelete
A touching post Kim. I'm sorry for the losses you have endured. My mother had a heart attack about four years ago and her symptoms were nothing more than a terrible stomach ache and vomiting. The ER docs thought she had food poisoning at first. So I'm glad you posted a reminder to women to be aware of potential symptoms. Now I'm off to check out OWH because I've got loads of cards that would be much better off in their loving hands.ReplyDelete
Well this sure brought a tear and a smile to my face this morning!ReplyDelete
Beautiful blogpost, card and great to know that so many people care for those who risk their lives for the safety of others!
My brother in law is an officer in the American Airforce and we only see eachother only once in a few years time, because they live in the USA, but I'm sure proud of him and my sister, because she also has to endure a lot and misses him like crazy when he has to be elsewhere on this planet.
Bye from the Netherlands and thanks for sharing!
Wonderful post and a wonderful card Kim. Women's heart attack symptoms are so very different and I gotta say that any woman that comes into our ED with pain anywhere on the torso gets an ECG. We women can't be trusted, and it's a great message you've given. Hugs to you on this sad day and if this message saves just one life then it's worth it.ReplyDelete
Thanks for caring so much to share those links. Especially when it is still so obviously emotional for you. I will definitely check out those links. Beautiful card, hunni! I am sure it will be well received. Hugs xxxReplyDelete