This site & the information contained herein email@example.com
2005 - 2015
Just Between Us
............a Couple of More Letters..
To You From Vic:
A welcome to Newly
Diagnosed COPD’ers. I was diagnosed with COPD in June of 1997. I did the best
thing I could do to help myself, I quit smoking cold-turkey. COPD was a tough
pill to swallow and I even suffered mood swings because of it. To me it was the
From Jackie Whitaker (Blossom):
(updated 8 years later)
Boy you must be scared; I know I was when I was diagnosed in 2004. My first week was a week of Hell internally. My FEV 1 was 38%, thought the Grim Reaper would soon be there for me. I had a GP that I'm sure was in the 25% in our province who discriminates against current and former smokers and offered no meds other than the old blue puffer. He dropped the bomb and sent me away. What a jerk he was.
And; I felt soooooooo alone and I was scared to death!
Well; I took a week to research then made an appointment for a consult because I "wasn't satisfied." I asked for and got a flu shot and pneumonia vaccine (it wasn't initially offered), insisted on a PFT, then saw a specialist, got on the right meds and searched out a new family Dr.
My saving grace was the Internet, forums and acquired KNOWLEDGE.
I do everything I did before and in some things a bit more and yes your life will change a bit but you'd have to make some adjustments just getting older wouldn't you?
No; your life is far from over and giving in and giving up isn't an option.
Once you get over the initial shock and maybe anger, take stock of yourself and what you can do to help yourself. Exercise (I can't stress this enough); do something, talk about your disease (just don't bore folks to tears), contact your MP and minister of health, get out and about, get educated, take part in the forums; get involved, SPEAK OUT!
Above all.....remember......YOU AREN'T ALONE! We're all in this together. God Bless.
Jackie Whitaker ( aka Blossom)
Updated June 2013 (7 years later)
It's hard to believe it's been 9 years since my diagnosis and 7 since I wrote the above. A lot of water under the bridge since then!
Out of sheer frustration at that time (in 2004) due to lack of Canadian information for COPD patients, I built this website and uploaded it to the internet for World COPD Day in 2005. (I never mentioned it when I did the original note to you here)
In the spring of 2007, I took over a newly opened message board forum that was in the process of being built for a COPD friend who; sadly passed away a few months later (in the early summer). Late summer of that same year, and with the help of a few likeminded patients, I founded a national registered charity for COPD. This one.
In the early autumn of 2007, I was diagnosed with lung cancer and because I was in pretty good shape physically and psychologically, I opted for surgery and I had a lobectomy (of my upper right lobe). Recovery didn't go so well and the seven days I was anticipating to be in the hospital, turned out to be 7 weeks. Five weeks in ICU, six plus weeks on a vent. Two weeks in a step down unit.
Christmas Eve I was released and my true recovery began at home. Starting with med weaning and exercise. Like a baby; I had to start all over again and with less to work with. But I did and delved back into things. Eleven months later, I still organized and walked in our "Lungevity Walk" 5 miles (yes miles; not km!) and did one of my best times!
In 2010 I went into respiratory failure, ended up again on a vent in ICU. Fortunately I was released 10 days later. Then recovery began again at home. It was a lot harder this time and took longer but.... I did it!
In 2012 I stepped down from the Board of Directors and as President of this charity. I had been diagnosed again with lung cancer. Chemotherapy, radiation and certainly surgery; isn't an option.
It's now 2013. I'm still plugging away!
I fish, when the weather's cooperative, I walk; not as much as I did but... I still do! I still love driving my Mustang, I'm still the webmistress here and though I update this site weekly, I'm currently working on updating all the pages. I'm still the Administrator of the forum/message board, I help the Board of Directors for this charity when needed/requested, I'm still an advocate but, most important of all, I still get to help other COPD patients and clinicians both directly and indirectly.
I continue to learn about this disease because new information, knowledge and understanding has certainly become more frequent.
I've lost some good COPD friends along the way; but I've made many as well.
If I could give you, even today, three pieces of advice it would be....
Stay informed about this disease and
Don't waste time on the past; enjoy life and living today!
I still do!!!
Hmmmm; I guess there's a fourth after all....
Use it or loose it!
Finally From LarryNZ;
The day Larry was diagnosed with COPD he seriously wondered whether to buy himself the new pair of shoes he had planned on or if he wouldn’t be needing shoes for much longer.
“The doctor was
quite negative, saying there was no cure, I was too old for a transplant, so all
I could do was to go to rehab.”
It was six
months later, when he started pulmonary rehabilitation, that he finally got the
information he needed to start fighting back.
Webmistess Note: Sadly Larry NZ lost his battle. He developed ALS and passed away April 20th, 2010.
Note: All of these people frequent several COPD forums to learn and share with fellow COPDer's. You're always welcome at any or all.
This page was last last updated July, 2013