Hello

I have read in recent articles regarding some people’s emotional and physiological issues relating to them having had a Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) or other cardiac event. This is a subject close to my heart (forgive the pun).

In April 2013 my wife, Michelle 42 (you may have read her postings on here), had a SCA whilst getting ready for bed. I rang for an ambulance and with the help of the operator performed CPR on her for over 5 minutes until the London Ambulance Service (LAS) arrived. After several shocks and what felt like an eternity, they finally managed to get her heart back in to a treatable rhythm. To cut a long story short, two weeks later Michelle returned home with no long-term issues and an Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (ICD) fitted.

It would have been very easy for Michelle to go down the route of “what if”, “why did this happen to me” or “when will it happen again”. For those who have an ICD fitted, it can be distressing when it starts pacing and the fear of it shocking can cause stress. I am a life coach and I feel I was able to stop Michelle dwelling on these negative thoughts and focusing on the future. Indeed, we managed to change the thinking from this being an awful problem in to an opportunity. How many people are lucky enough to survive death!

Michelle’s outlook on life has been amazing. She returned to work as a nurse within 6 weeks. We have both talked at LAS events regarding cardiac arrest, the importance of CPR and defibrillators. Michelle, with help from the coaching, has found it very helpful to talk about her SCA it in a frank way. Plus we have held several CPR training events and talked at various events.

I would hope our story highlights the fantastic job the NHS does and help those struggling with life after death to be inspired to look at life in a positive way. Many SCA suffers may not even be aware that life coaching could help deal with the anxiety and stress they feel after an SCA, and in the process help them to go on and live full and amazing lives.

An additional aspect, talking from my own perspective, is the way the relatives and friends deal with the reality of having a loved one that has suffered a SCA.

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