That Time My Husband Had a Heart Attack (The Addendum.)

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I don’t take time as often as I’d like to share random ramblings like this one like I once did here on PPP, but felt that someone today might just need to hear this.


Maybe that someone is you? 🙂 


And, just in case you’re here for the deals (I totally understand!), scoot on past to the next penny pinched post ~ I’m so very thankful for you!


One year ago today, my husband had a heart attack.


My 45-year-old-mostly-healthy husband had a heart attack. (For the record I was 40 ~ no reason for you to think I’m quite 45 yet, right?)


It’s been a heck of a year.

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You can read all the ~ ahem ~ gory? details over HERE.


But for right now, I thought I’d share the aftermath.


This year hasn’t been easy. 


Besides his heart attack (which in itself caused lots of anxiety for both of us and a little depression on his end ~ from what I’ve been told that’s pretty normal when people go through something so hard . . . ), we’ve also had some way-too-hard-to-deal-with-days with struggling family members who we just love too much, two crazy jobs that keep us racing around all day long . . .


and then we have 3 kids. 😉


Two of them are teenagers.




Needless to say, we’ve had more than a few tough days.


But I have to share with you what I’ve learned along the way.


I’ve learned that you really can survive some of the hard stuff.


I’ve learned that my husband is a way tougher man than I ever knew.


And I’ve learned that the hard stuff sometimes lets you live a little richer than you ever lived before. 

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This was us the week after his heart attack “playing hooky” 😉 

James is doing great. (He’s not always so sure of that, but I promise he is ~ I can tell.) 


He’s lost a bunch of weight and maintained it for a year.


(Probably because he knows I’ll likely kill him if he doesn’t stay on track. Just teasing, honey?  Um, not really.) 


But as we’ve walked along this road . . .




I’m not so sure I’d return to the pre-heart-attack-life we once had.


Here’s the thing.


We snuggle in a little more closely at night, because we know every day just how lucky we are.


We have a little more patience and are just a wee bit gentler with one another (most days?) because we totally get that it really is important not to sweat the small stuff.


And we know all too well now that almost all the stuff is small stuff.




So here’s my little hint if you’re going through something so painful today that you feel like you can’t breathe.


I’ve been there.






A lot.


And you probably just want to cry.


And completely just give up. 


And you wonder what on earth God was thinking when He threw you over this curve ball.


But I promise.




I really do know.


There is some amazing little gift you’re going to find smack dab in the middle of the mess that you’re struggling through right now.


And maybe.


Just maybe.


You’ll look back and see that this awful-terrible-thing-that-is-sucking-out-all-of-your-breath today.


That it’s simply an amazing opportunity for God’s grace to shine through.


Blessings to you today.


Right now,


wherever you’re at.


God’s peace be with you as I promise we’ve seen it in our own family this year. 


“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30



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  1. I needed this today. Thank you:) Been feeling incredibly discouraged and hopeless for a really long time, wondering when things might look up.

    • Oh Misty – I’m so sorry you’re going through something so difficult. Sending prayers and hugs your way ~ I know it can’t be easy but do know God’s walking right alongside you. Hugs!

  2. Laurie—thanks for this today. A year later I’m still fighting ovarian cancer but hanging in. Am surrounded by so many angels in my life and they keep me strong. Not giving up!

  3. You my dear are so real……thank you!!!!!!! I shared on FB our families hard thing but maybe I will share here also. Almost 4 years ago our oldest had a serious car accident woo what a hard few weeks that was 1st a week in the hospital then several weeks at home w/ dr. appointments, therapy, etc., before he could go back to school. He had several broken bones & was in a wheel chair and on crutches after that. Without God I’m not sure we would have survived, He is our rock in so many ways. For the most part we are much sweeter to each other as a family (knowing how it could have been different I’m sure makes a difference). We have a saying in our area “God is Good All the Time & All the Time God is Good” and believe me it is so true. Also thank you for sharing your faith & also living it, it is obvious to your readers. BTW love the bible versed\s on the challenge & Crocktober pages ♥

  4. My brother passed away from one 6 weeks ago at 41. He was so healthy we just don’t understand it. He leaves behind 2 young children and a wife. I tell you this cause you are so so lucky to have a second chance. My family would give anything to have that opportunity. I know you realize how delicate life is and appreciate it much more now after your husband’s scare. I’m glad for your family that he’s still around for you all. ❤️

  5. I am where you are. My husband at the age of 56 suffered a series of 5 strokes beginning February 2015 to October 2015.

    I ended up quoting my full time job without my income and his it was scary. I finally found a job to do from home but still do not have the flexibility I need to assist him. He can maintain well on his own although his vision was effected he is dizzy most the time. But we are making it work the best we can.

    I know I would never have gotten this far if not for my faith in God my kids, family , friends and long showers where I can cry and clear my head.

    The first thing to know you are never alone there is someone out there going through similar things. I once tried to start a support blog but did not get far . I should fit a course in my very busy schedule and try again some day.
    God bless you and thank you for sharing and your blogs.

  6. Thank you for sharing. I struggle daily taking care of my husband from a stroke. It stole so much from us. We struggle financially and emotionally but I do know God is in control and even if this journey is hard He knows best. I pray for the courage to face each day and challenges.

  7. We’ve been told we won”t be given more than we can bear. Sometimes you think how can I get through this, I am not strong enough. But our Heavenly Father know us better than we know ourselves. We come out stronger on the other side and more grateful.

  8. Love and prayers for you and your family.

  9. In 2014 I spent 4 1/2 months in the hospital due to pancreatitis. I had biliary stones and a dead gallbladder which is what caused it. I couldn’t stop throwing up and might have ate a plate of food in that span. Once I finally started getting better (which I honestly didn’t know if I would) I came home on Christmas Eve. My battle wasn’t over. I had to teach my body how to accept food again. Trust me you don’t just start eating again after a long period spent not eating and you develop weird texture issues. I continued to develop cysts that had to be drained every 4-6 months for a year and developed diabetes due to the damage done to the pancreas. I’m well today but will always have the damage. Then in November of 2015 my husband had a triple bypass (thank God, no heart attack). He went in for a stress test due to family history and they found abnormalities. He then had a heart catheter which showed he had 2-75% blockages and 1-100% blockage. The doctor told me he honestly didn’t know how he was still with us. He developed a bad infection about 2-weeks later and not only spent Thanksgiving in the hospital for the surgery but Christmas as well because of the infection and was on a wound pump and IV antibiotics at home. He is well now and doing great.

    I know this was long and rambling BUT my point is this. Was it hard? Yes. Was it scary? Heck yes. Did we survive? ABSOLUTELY!!!!! You can and you will. Just keep on keepin on and most importantly, cherish EVERY day as if it your last.

  10. That you for your post today! It is comforting to know you are not alone. My 60 year old husband had a heart attack 13 months ago. When the doctor told me he had 100% blockage and it was a good thing that he woke me up to tell me something was wrong was a miracle! Most never wake up from their sleep! I know we had God looking out for us that night. It is a good wake up call to what is most important in your life and we thank God every day!

  11. Blessings to you and your family!!!
    Eighteen months ago, I had pulmonary embolisms and spent five days in intensive care. The cardiologist said I had escaped 3 opportunities to die! Yes, God took care of me, just as He took care of your husband! Thankfully, our RN son recognized I was in trouble and called the ambulance. I (We) learned a bunch! I’m doing great now, and so, so grateful for God’s Grace!!!
    I pray you and your family will have a full and long life!

  12. Isn’t it funny (just plain weird) how when we read of others having traumatic events somehow it gives us comfort? Not that we would ever wish our pain on anyone else, but that we maybe aren’t as alone as we think we are? Over the last year our family has been through the ringer. Only sharing this because I’m still in the middle of trying to sort out the rage, hurt, depression, fear, and a host of other issues that have never plagued me before. And maybe my story might help someone else feel some healing. A year ago I had kidney stones twice in 3 weeks, gallbladder stones that came with emergency surgery and then “dying” on the operating table, they got me back obviously, but 3 cracked ribs from CPR hurt worse than the gallstones did…then 2 weeks after that drama our son, in his senior year of college had a horrific accident that almost took his leg. Weeks of hospitals, 3 times, 2 major surgeries, lots of pain and wheelchairs and therapy etc.. He is now walking again – Praise God, with limp, swelling and pain, but WALKING. He never lost site of his diploma coming in May (2 weeks from now) and has finished without letting anything slide. Then, our second oldest daughter told us she had been molested when she was 16 which was over 10 years ago. The waves of devastation from this announcement hurt more than I can describe. Then a month later, 2 more hospital stays for me – Meningitis and then Pneumonia. Can I say that next year I will get these vaccines??? Then a week out of the second hospital stay, we find out our granddaughter has been molested as well, currently not in the past, and for over a year. Again, pain like I’ve never known. DCF interviews, Police and detectives, and a whole host of things I hope nobody ever has to deal with. Not done with this one but on the down side of the legal stuff I hope. Now we are wading the waters of counseling for her as well as her mom (our middle daughter) and me – I’m supposed to know how to fix all of this and I just don’t. I just can’t. All this to say “hang in there”. Sometimes I think hanging (literal) sounds like a good idea…jkjk..but God has never failed to give us peace in the insanity. Some days I have to look hard for it – I have to beg Him to allow me to sleep for a few hours because I just don’t at night. I have to find things that make me smile or laugh. Remembering how to smile is a luxury I didn’t know I would miss. Pretending to be ok at church when you want to scream that everything is NOT OK and prayer and Sunday School answers sometimes are not what I need to hear. But you can’t say those things because your dad is the pastor… I am not being cynical. I’m being honest. Even Christians have bad days, weeks, YEARS sometimes. God knows we have questions. He doesn’t get mad at us when we ask why. He lets us beat our fists on his chest and cry until we are spent. But ultimately I still belong to a God bigger than all of these problems. And reading these posts from “invisible friends” whom I may never meet, helps me. I’m not alone. and You are not alone either. I pray God’s peace and blessings over each of you.

  13. Duane McGee says:

    Great to hear!!! Had been wondering about him, God is always good!!! He is faithful and will never let us down. He knows the end from the beginning and when we can’t see the end He can!! It’s just a matter of us trusting in Him!!! Favor be upon you!! God’s favor has been upon my life and family beginning the end of January 2017 all because I completely started trusting in Him!!! It has been an amazing ride!!! I know the rest of the year will be incredible for your family!!! Keep trusting and continue to raise your level of expectation!!!

  14. Thank you for sharing. It’s reassuring to know you both got through the tough times. Three weeks ago I was diagnosed with severe aortic stenosis, which will require major open heart surgery to repair. And I’m only 58. Waiting to get into one of the top cardiac hospitals in the country for a second opinion and to schedule surgery there. It’s been an emotional roller oater the past three weeks, but like you, we will get through this and, hopefully, will learn important lessons like you did.

  15. Renee Daniel says:

    Thank you so much for sharing! I needed this. Continuous prayers for you and your family.

  16. I’m proud you two are hanging in there and doing well now. Cardiac is very scary! Also one trying to keep your status as the head of the household but your body won’t cooperate can leave one feeling as if not quite whole. Remind him it takes two to make a whole and that’s why we need you both. Besides if things like this didn’t happen along the way our relations would get boring and very routine blah! We also have the two teens the oldest graduates next month. Time for another shift in our home too that I’m not ready for. I miss naps and play time at the park! It goes way to fast dear just be sure to hug them more and add a couple more “hooky” days in there. Today is nails for prom for us girls 😉

  17. I can totally relate! On 9/23/15 my almost 52 year old husband went to the doc for headaches & after an MRI they found a 7cm brain tumor, after his brain biopsy diagnosed with glioblastoma (GBM)grade 4, it is a terminal brain cancer, he had brain surgery to remove as much of the tumor as they “safely” could, 30% was removed, another 40% shrunk after 30 sessions of radiation & chemo, had a reoccurrence & is now on Avastin infusions. I have found out we have amazing family, friends, coworkers & employers! Things that used to matter don’t & the little things are the most important! Sad that it takes a serious life event to come to this realization, enjoy life friends & don’t sweat the small stuff!!

  18. NM in WY says:

    Thanks so much for sharing. It was really helpful to hear these words of encouragement. Blessing on you and your family, Will continue to remember you in our prayers. Keep up the great work!

    • Laurie, I love PPP and I love reading your posts. I read today you were putting your house on the market. Is your husband getting transferred again? I was at work frantically reading, lol. I love the way you roll with the punches and trust in God. God bless!

  19. Laurie, We lost my 25 yr old brother in December and I have had a lot of up and down days. This post really helped. Thanks for sharing something so personal. Your site is a nice distraction from my racing mind. Blessings to you and your family!

  20. Jenny Zender says:

    I find it faith to be reading this today. My husband had a heart attach last summer,totally unexpected too. We have experienced the same feelings too. Let it be comfort to you knowing others are experiencing the same thing. My husband was active 54 year old at my son’s baseball game. It has been a year. We had a slight set back as he is getting winded again, the only thing looking back he saw as any given sign. They did a heart cath today to make sure there was not blockage and all came back ok. So it’s not heart related. But now we question why is he short of breathe. We too have learned to value each day and not sweat the small stuff. Prayers to you and your family. Jen from Ohio

  21. Annie T. says:

    Hi Laurie,
    Thank you for posting about your husband today and what the two of you have gone through together over the past year. Your post/message was very timely for me today. I have been trying for months to help my dad transfer from one nursing home into another and have just been running into one obstacle after another. Today was probably one of the roughest days yet as nothing seemed to go right today. God is with us in all of our storms. We just have to be still long enough so that we can see how he is helping us through them.

  22. Thanks for your sweet words of encouragement. You are a bleesing.

  23. Laurie, thank you for sharing your story with us! What a witness this is. THANK you! I’m so glad your husband is better. I’ve been wanting to ask you, what exercise program do you do every morning. I definitely need to exercise daily. I hear you talk about your morning routine & wish I had an exercise program to start every day with. If you don’t mind sharing, I would so appreciate it. Thanks again for sharing!

  24. Laurie, I am so glad to hear that James is doing well and that y’all have come out the other side stronger than ever!

  25. Good to hear that your husband is doing better! Life can be so hard and scary sometimes. So grateful that we have a great God Who cares for, strengthens, and upholds us through good times and bad. 2016 was an incredibly hard year for us – my husband lost his job of 9 years (thankfully he found another just months after), we miscarried our precious miracle baby boy the day before Mother’s Day (we’d been told the year before we were unlikely to ever have children), my paternal grandmother passed away unexpectedly in October, and my aunt lost her 6-year battle with breast cancer the day after Thanksgiving. To say that we struggled, wondering what on earth God was doing, is an understatement. Yet through all the pain, and hurt, and loss, God upheld us, and preserved us, and strengthened us. Like I said to someone near the end of that year: “I don’t know how we would have made it through this year without the love, and strength, and compassion of God. He’s what carried us through!”
    Thank you for sharing your story and your thoughts! And remember what Psalm 37:23-25 & 28-29 says: “The steps of a man are established by the LORD, when he delights in His way; though he fall, he shall not be cast headlong, for the LORD upholds his hand. I have been young, and now am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken or his children begging for bread. … For the LORD loves justice; He will not forsake His saints. They are preserved forever, but the children of the wicked shall be cut off. The righteous shall inherit the land and dwell upon it forever.”

    “The LORD upholds”
    “He will not forsake”
    “They [the righteous] are preserved forever”

    God is so good to keep His covenant promises to His people! Blessed be the Name of the LORD!

  26. Kelly D. says:

    I really needed this today! My husband had been disabled for the last 3 years, but has not yet been granted “disability.” After 18 months of waiting following denial #1, our hearing with the disability judge is tomorrow morning (well today, since it’s 1:30am). I have been his caregiver, chauffeur, cheerleader, nurse & everything else that I can’t think of at the moment. The loss of his income was devastating to our family. But, with your help (and others) I am slowly learning a penny pinching life. Granted, I need to get better at it..but I’m trying. Thank you for reminding me not to sweat the small stuff. God’s got this! And, quite frankly, I don’t know where we’d be right now if HE didn’t!!! ❤️to you and your family! Praying for better days ahead!

  27. Glad to hear your husband is doing well. My mom had a heart attack and it came out of nowhere. It’s such a scary thing to go through. But it does make you stronger and closer. Thank you for sharing and all that you do to help us save money. It has been very much appreciated since my mom is now on disability.

  28. Kimberly says:

    My husband had a heart attack 13 years ago. He had multiple stints and was told he was good as new in April of 2005. He stopped smoking lost weight we thought we were in the clear. He died 12 tears ago today June 13, 2005 at the age of 44. Cherish the good times. Do your due diligence regarding your health. Dr’s. Are sometimes wrong. I am sending prayers for continued good health.

  29. You are so right!
    Thank you for sharing!
    This has been one of the toughest years of my life! Through it all, God has been holding me, guiding my family and giving me the courage and strength to move on! Without Him, I’d be lost.

  30. This is exactly how I felt today. I kept feeling like I just couldn’t breathe because of anxiety hoping for a teaching position. It’s been going on for months I’ve not known what my future in teaching will be God is certainly testing my patience. Sometimes I just feel like giving up but I continue to trust in God.

  31. Thank you for sharing your story Laurie. May God continue to bless your family.

  32. My 52 yo husband had his second heart attack this spring. Our poor old doggie had a serious ulcer and nearly died, and our teenage daughter suffered a serious depression after a relationship breakup. She was suicidal and had to be hospitalized for an extended period. All of these things happened in a two month span! I’m still reeling from everything and still trying to figure out the new normal. I found out that I’m strong, but I also need nurturing. Not sure my family gets that yet.

  33. Danielle - Pacific Northwest says:

    This just happened to us this week. My 46 year old husband had a heart attack last week. I haven’t even reacted except for two minutes on the phone to my brother from tbe ER. I just keep taking deep breathes & plow through the emotions. Afraid if I let myself crumble the pieces may never go back together.

    Bless you & yours. Glad you have found life again after & that you came out of it strong with your sense of humour still in tact. I will pray for the same for us.

    Thank you for the post.

    • Oh Danielle – I’m so so sorry and know all too well your emotions right now. It DOES get easier (I promise!) but give your self and your husband layers of grace right now. Praying for you today ~ you and he can do this and I promise you’ll come out changed but better on the other side!

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