JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – It was my 30th birthday and my mom wasn't there. She was in a Maryland hospital recovering from surgery. She had blockages in two arteries that caused heart palpitations and she wasn't feeling "herself" for months. She had gone to several different doctors, they ran many tests and ultimately concluded that it was likely stress.
Well, it wasn't. It was her heart but no one checked until finally a doctor dug deeper, diagnosed her with the deadly blockages, and ordered the surgery that likely saved her life.
On this National Wear Red Day, don't just talk about it, be about it! Watch what you eat, exercise, stop smoking and get to the doctor if you just don't feel like yourself. Sometimes you have to fight for it, but it's worth every effort.
My mom did make my next milestone birthday celebration, but if she hadn't been relentless about her care she might not have been alive to celebrate. She's seen me get married, have two beautiful children, and continues to root for me as only a mother can. I'm so blessed that she raised her voice and that's why I wear red.
What about you? What's your heart story? We all have a connection to heart disease let's help make it a success story.
It's the number one killer of women.
48,000 women die of heart disease each year
90 percent of women have at least one risk factor
So today, Rock your Red, take a fun photo, post it on social media, use the hashtags #JaxGoesRed and #WearRedDay and spread the word that women have to take care of their heart. Don't miss a birthday!