An Ordinary Day...

Wednesday, April 12th started off as an ordinary day. The alarm sounded off at 6:00 a.m. like it always did. Reggie did his work day morning ritual, showering, grooming, selecting a suit and accessorizing with the perfect accents for Read more

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stroke

An Ordinary Day…

Posted on by Gigi in Reggie's Stroke 4 Comments

Wednesday, April 12th started off as an ordinary day. The alarm sounded off at 6:00 a.m. like it always did. Reggie did his work day morning ritual, showering, grooming, selecting a suit and accessorizing with the perfect accents for his outfit. We chatted about what we thought the day had in store for us, what I had planned and gentle reminder that he was playing ball later. After a departing kiss, Reggie was gone for a regular day at the office.

Fast forward to that evening, I heard the door open and Reggie greeted me and sprinted upstairs to change into his basketball clothes and off to the gym he went. I knew the basketball routine, that you had to get there on time so you could be picked to play, so there was always this urgency, much like when I am going to yoga class. I had some editing to take care of, so I began to work on some images, when a little after 9, the landline rings, my first instinct was not to answer this unrecognizable number, thinking it was a telemarketer.

I answer. “Reggie’s wife?” A strange voice came from the receiver. I held the phone closer, as if all of a sudden I had a hearing problem.

“Yes,” I said, feeling my heart rate increasing, knowing something is wrong.

“Something happened to Doc.” “They are working on him.” The frantic voice said.

I am sure the person said more than that, but my brain started shutting down and I cannot even recall who called me. All I could think about was working on him is my husband even alive.

“They are taking him to St. Jude Emergency Room.” The voice said.

My mouth was dry, I started trembling as I hung up the phone. I quickly put on some clothes, looked up where this hospital was, and drove to the emergency room not knowing what I would be greeted with.

“He’s in bed 19.” The ER receptionist said, as he buzzed open the door for me to go back. There were so many people being treated, like a war zone. I was so scared of what I was going to see. At that moment I thought that I should have called someone to come with me, I was all alone and at this moment no one knew this was happening.

The scene was chaotic. I walked into this cold arena with alarms ringing, lights blinking, loud voices, people hurrying about, moaning voices and then bed 19, my handsome husband was still in his basketball clothes vomiting profusely. He was surrounded by a team of medical people asking him all sorts of questions, his eyes were glazed, and he had a shiny glow about him, he saw and recognized me. He was alive.

“I loooooooooooove choooooo.” he said to me in the unmistakable slurred stroke voice, that we have all seen in the public service commercials. I knew something horrible had happened to him, in the 30 years I have know him he has never been sick. He has hypertension, but he always takes his medicine.

Quickly he was whisked away for a cat scan, as the emergency room Dr.Katz began to explain that Reggie had a hemorrhagic stroke and the neurosurgeon, Dr. Noblett was on the way. He then went on to tell me that they would be doing a craniotomy, at this point I am feeling faint as I sign my name on the consent form. Within moments I’m following my husband on a gurney to the operating room. I was numb.

post surgery ICU

This is the most difficult thing I have ever experienced. A life we loved was suddenly snatched away, initially leaving me in a state of panic. After there were no more tears to shed, I came to the realization that I had to keep on living and become active in Reggie’s recovery and my families survival.

I have to remain hopeful that Reggie will fight and win. That this athlete will be running the longest marathon ever, that we will have to be patience and know this is going to be a long journey. I know that my husband, being the most intelligent man I know, the most generous, the fittest, and with his family support, if anyone can beat this – he can.

xoxo,

Gigi


LIVING A FULL LIFE-Looks like…

Posted on by Gigi in Well-Being 7 Comments

I have been crazy busy this past month. Physically, mentally, and emotionally overwhelmed with this crazy thing called life! About a month ago my hubby had a health scare, to be specific a STROKE, the good news is that it was a very mild stroke and everything is fine now. Those of you who know my husband know he is the picture of health, he exercises daily ie. 10 mile runs, basketball, swimming in the ocean, kitesurfing, etc.,- does not and has not ever drank alcohol, follows a vegan diet, drinks lots of water, and still this happened to him. He is the fittest person I know.

I’m at the age where these occurrences are happening more often to my friends and family members. While we all know that we are not going to live forever, it made me question what “LIVING A FULL LIFE ” looks like… Am I living each day to the fullest? Or am I just going through the motions? Am I chasing my passions or putting off my dream to “tomorrow”? Am I making my fantasies my realities? So many thoughts crossed my mind about what living is truly about.

So my friends HERE IS GIGI’S LIST on LIVING A FULL LIFE. Not in any particular order…

1. HEALTH

We have a lot of control in this area. A good diet and plenty exercise are a must! We follow a vegan diet with a lot of raw vegan and lots of water. Hydration is so important. I don’t like going to the doctor, but I go for my annual check-ups, knowing that early detection saves lives. I also go to my eastern medicine doctor and get acupuncture.

Sexy vegan food

Sexy vegan food

2. PASSION

Are you chasing your passion? For me passion is important, it keeps life exciting. Discover a hobby, or revisit an old one. Take the time to learn something new. Right now I am passionate about photography, I have always loved taking pictures but never made the time to really pursue the craft. Now I wake up thinking about it and close my eyes at night thinking about it…

Photographer Gigi

Photographer Gigi

3. AUTHENTIC SELF

Being true to yourself and what you believe in is critical. Surround yourself with those who accept you for who you are. Know that there will be casualties along the way and thats okay. Always strive to “BE THE BEST YOU”. Make a conscious decision to surround yourself with those individuals that you know have your back.

4. LOVING RELATIONSHIPS

If you have a significant other in your life you are blessed, and I don’t mean just on paper…I am fortunate to be married to my best friend. We will celebrate 24 years of marriage in July. Work on loving relationships with friends and family, accept them and their shortcomings, don’t try and remake them. Be a loyal friend and always be willing to forgive and love unconditionally. Negative relationships put a lot of stress on our well being, if you have some of these- who does not, try and figure out if you can “fix” these situations, if not LET IT GO.

Easter Sunday Reggie & Gigi

Easter Sunday Reggie & Gigi

5. My yoga teacher said “BE CONTENT WITH STILLNESS”

It is okay to do nothing sometimes. Quiet your mind and slow down…Take an hour or two for yourself and do nothing-detach from your electronics. Trust me the world will go on without you.

Yoga

Yoga

6. KEEP YOUR MIND STIMULATED

Read. Challenge your mind. It is like any other muscle in your body, stop using it and it gets soft and flabby. Learn a new language, go back to school, take a class, do something to excite your brain.

7. TRAVEL

Whether around the world or the next town, take the time to go and explore something new. Yes traveling is expensive, but it is worth the sacrifice. Just get and your car and drive for a couple of hours, explore a new town act like a tourist, you will be surprised at what you might find.

Lioness and her Cubs

Lioness and her Cubs

8. SECURITY

Take care of your business! Plan for your future…Think about the “WHAT IF” and have a plan in place. I met a woman this past weekend who told me she lost her house a year ago in a fire, and she had to prove to the insurance company what she had, and she did not have documents to support her claim. Although it may be a long way off, think about what “retirement” looks like for you and your family.

9. SPIRITUALITY

Believe and have faith in something. A spiritual base is necessary to keep you grounded. Faith is powerful.

10. CELEBRATE

Party and celebrate life…birthdays, anniversaries, graduations, holidays and just because…just do it–find reasons to get together.

Original_TomKat-Studio-New-Years-Eve-Slide-11-Peach-Sparkler_s3x4_lg

Lastly,

11. HAVE A HEART

Do you ever do something for someone that is totally not expected? Comfort someone? Trust and look for the good in others.

What does “LIVING A GOOD LIFE” ¬†look like to you? Please share.

XOXO,

GIGI

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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