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The Power of the Mind

the power of the mind

I have to be truly honest. My thoughts, this last week or so, have put me in a downward spiral. The power of our mind and what we tell ourselves, or allow others to impose upon us, can create havoc in our state of well being. Not to mention how this can affect those who are close to us.

Even my indoor feline friends could feel my upset, and, as a result, seemed extra attentive and vigilant in staying close to me with their calm and soothing energy.

I am still learning how to embrace my empath abilities. Sometimes I do not even realize how one little action, or reaction, can turn my whole world upside down for a week or more. Empaths are not the only ones who can self-sabotage. Anyone and everyone can, and at some point, will likely do this. In fact, it is more common than one would think. I think the trick is to be aware of what you are telling yourself and how you talk to yourself. Whether it be out loud or in silence, in the privacy of your own mind. Your mind hears and acts on it all. It can make the difference between sleeping well, or lying awake all night ruminating on a particular topic or situation. It could be an event that you attended and things you heard or saw, or it could be the words or actions of another individual you were recently in contact with. Or, maybe even you yourself have imposed a negative story and set free a destructive thought pattern. It could be as simple as trying to tell yourself that you are something or someone that you quite simply are not.

I used to tell myself I was not smart enough to learn basic computer skills and embrace technology, and yet, here I am, writing this post and sharing it with you, on my very own site. Mind you, I am still learning. But, isn’t that the point? To push beyond our comfort zones and challenge ourselves? I changed my mindset, and now, I am doing it and I love it!

In my case, I was slow to learn how to quickly identify and recognize what starts or triggers my mind into this self-sabbotaging mode. It’s something that my mind just loves to sink its teeth into, once that door has been opened.

Now however, it seems that, through simply observing what is happening in my mind, I am able to recognize and recover from these patterns a little quicker, each time it happens. I think the key component to my continued improvement has been the regular disciplined practice of applying these principles.

There have been times in my life when I was told that it did not look like things were going to turn out well for me. One good example would be after my heart attack, when my speech pathologist told me that there may have been permanent damage done to my vocal cords, as a result of having breathing tubes in for such a long period of time. She said that I may never regain my original speaking voice, let alone be able to sing again. When all of the tubes were finally removed, several weeks after having been put in, you could barely hear the whispered squeaks that came out of my mouth. I refused to accept these words as gospel, however. They were simply an opinion. An opinion based on a few pieces or bits of information that had been gathered and put together. Or, perhaps, were based on data and statistics gathered from the majority of similar cases. I simply refused to accept this and told myself that I would be able to talk and sing again! Just like I used to..

Even today, I continue to do the therapy exercises and it has helped me to make great progress. I can sing again!

So, I sing when I can and rest when I know I should to help with the ongoing healing process. I have not regained all of what I once had but I am singing again and it feels wonderful. Especially when I hit a note with the band that sounds like what I once had. It gives me chills just thinking about it!

So, I will continue to believe. I will continue to tell myself that I will continue to regain strength and tone in my voice. I will get back to where I once was.

What am I to you – Nora Jones “cover” @ Friday Afternoon Happy Hour

So why then, do I let the actions or the words of others, and occasionally myself, set the rules for the game at some times, and not at others? The only answer I can offer right now, is that I am human and I am far from perfect. But, I’m a whole lot better than I used to be.

I will say that being kind to yourself, especially if, or when you slip, will make it a lot easier to get back on your own personal cheering squad.

What we tell ourselves or let others tell us, whether it be positive or negative, is very powerful! It could be the difference between life and death, in some of our cases. Either way, the impact can be like being hit by a train or a soft pillow.

I truly believe in the power of the mind! So, tell yourself, repeatedly, what you want to be true. Focus your thoughts on what you desire and how you truly want things to be and it will happen.

Be very careful and aware of the negativity and negative energy that floats around, do not take it on to be your own. It is usually someone trying to get rid of their own heavy baggage and you could become the recipient, if you allow it. I made this mistake this past week and it felt awful! It has had a negative, ripple effect on everything I touched and did.

Once I recognized what had happened, and what was happening, I began taking the necessary steps to correct it and it has made a real difference.

The power is in me and you. Live your life free! Free of all limitations. You can live the life you desire! It is all about the power of your mind.

As Always,
Love Tanya Jean

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Beautiful Blue

Beautiful Blue Jay

Good morning. Here is a pic of my latest piece. With this piece, I decided to use colored pencils. I chose this option for a couple of reasons. Firstly, because this amazing species has the most vibrant shades of blue in nature and I really wanted to challenge myself to capture it as my eyes do. We have many Jays who frequent our feeding station daily, at the this time of year.
Secondly, I decided to sketch rather than paint as I am still boiling sap and I can leave the piece at a moments notice in order to tend to my sugar making duties. Painting makes that a little more challenging. You see, I can sketch anywhere with very few tools.
I really wanted to create a piece with color and the feeding station has been busy with many feathered friends all singing there spring songs. Although the blue jays are not my favorite sounding feathered friend they sure are beautiful to watch. Spring is here and I can hardly wait for my gardens to start to bloom. They add such color and beauty to our little piece of heaven. Especially after a long and cold snowy winter.
Hope you all enjoy my “Beautiful Blue”.

As Always,
Love Tanya Jean

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Sugar Making time

It is that time of year again! Spring has sprung and Maple syrup season is once again upon us. My husband and I decided to tap just a few trees this year. Going small is a lot easier to keep up with if mother nature decides to cooperate and the trees poduce a lot of sap. Which they certainly have done, so far this year.

Sugar making, which is what we call the process of making maple syrup, is a great way to get outdoors and enjoy the warm spring weather. Which I so look forward to after the long cold and dark days of late winter, here in New Brunswick’s snow belt!

Instead of using our camp on the back part of our wood lot, we decided to set up in the back yard this year. Our thought was to just tap a few trees near the house. Just a few mature maples that would be more easily accessed, considering how much snow has fallen this year. It is my thought that, after gathering and carrying the full buckets of sap back to the holding containers, it was the right call! Lol

We will get back to the camp and enjoy it, once most of the snow has melted. In the mean time, the back yard suits me just fine. The closer everything is, the better! Especially since, this year, in order to get around on our wood lot, we have had to be on our snow shoes more than we were off of them.

My neurologist is still quite surprised that I am able to use my snow shoes as well as I can, considering my physical challenges and disability. I wasn’t sure about it at first, but I am determined to try my best! After my event, I decided that if I could live through a widow maker, I was no longer going to let anything stop me. I was going to give everything I tried my absolute best effort. That includes lacing up my snow shoes and breaking a trail in the fresh snow. Even if there’s 4 feet of it!! Lol

We decided that 14 trees should give us enough sap to produce a sufficient quantity of maple syrup to stock up our household reserves and maybe share a bottle or two. At the start of this year’s season, we were down to and using our last one litre mason jar of syrup.

This year’s weather has been very good on our little piece of heaven for sugar making so far. The sap’s sugar content seems to be nice and high, which has made for a super yummy first batch.

I love making homemade pancakes this time of year and topping them with strawberries, whip cream and our fresh warm maple syrup.

It really seems more like a dessert than a meal, but who doesn’t love dessert for lunch or maybe even supper, sometimes?? Well, I certainly do! Even my doctors agree that it is okay, in moderation, and of course it is good for heart health.

Every time I look at the plate, it warms my heart! Lol

Also, this year, our laying hens, Waffles and Tiny have enjoyed having some extra company outside with them on the warm sunny days.

And of course, we can’t forget about Missy, who enjoys overseeing the whole operation, from her directors chair. Lol

I wanted to share my homemade pancake batter recipe with you all. Maybe you’ll find yourself inspired to track down some fresh Maple Syrup and give them a try.

Tanya Jean’s Homemade Pancakes

This recipe makes approximately 10 regular size Pancakes

1 1/2 cups of flour

2 tablespoons of honey

1 tablespoon of baking powder

1/2 teaspoon of salt(optional)

1 egg beaten slightly

1 1/4 cup of cow’s milk or almond milk unsweetened

Combine all ingredients in order, in a large mixing bowl. Wisk or stir together until well blended but still somewhat lumpy. Pour 1 cup of batter onto a hot, lightly greased griddle (a cast iron griddle, for best results). Cook until puffy and bubbles appear then flip over to brown on the other side and enjoy. This recipe can easily be doubled and will produce the same results.


This is how much Syrup we have bottled so far this year and based on how well the trees are producing so far, we will easily double this amount for our pantry reserves.


As Always,

Love Tanya Jean

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My Animal Friends

My animal friends have been, and continue to be, the most constant blessing in my life. The love and companionship they freely give has seen me through the best of times and the worst of times. They make me laugh when I need it the most, and I believe that they provide the purest of love that one could receive. Who could want more in a true friend? These true friends have kept me from making decisions about whether or not to continue on, in this life… After all, who would care for them and love them the way I do? They need my love as much as I need or needed theirs.

Jam is the oldest living animal friend that I have and she is nine years old. I believe she picked me, rather than I picked her, in a barn full of kittens. She was sitting all by herself on a piece of plywood close to the barn window. She looked rather sad, and had a nasty eye infection. But, looking through her good eye, she saw me. I mean really saw me. I felt an instant connection with her. She was definitely coming home with us. There was no question.

The barn was full of cats and yet she was the one that spoke to me with her soft and loving gaze. As the other kittens played aggressively, they paid no attention to the people or the cows around them. It was like Jam was a kitten with an old soul.

I could not help myself, I had to pick her up. Once I did, there was no going back. She would be part of my life from this point forward. She might have only been six weeks old but the farmer said that she had been drinking some of the cow’s milk from a bowl, so she would be fine to take home. It appeared that the mother had been weaning the kittens off of her own milk and really did not want to be feeding them anymore. Jam would get better nourishment once I got her home. I, like my grandmother, have this want to make sure individuals, whether animal or people, are well fed. She made no fuss when I would treat her eye infection and it only took a few days of antibiotic cream to clear it up.

From the first day, until this day, she silently speaks to me. Every single day she tells me that she loves me just the way I am. She never judges. She is always direct with her wants and needs and she accepts what she receives lovingly. Who could want more in a friendship, I ask?

The hardest part about having my heart attack, for me, was being away from her and my other animal friends at home. I felt so lonely being away from them. All I could think about was getting home to be with them all.

After being away for months, I was very worried the first time I got to go home on a day pass. Would they know me? Would they remember me? I smelled like the hospital, I weighed 80lbs less, and my voice did not sound the same.

As I stepped through the door, my eyes filled with tears when Jam came right over to greet me. It was like she was saying, “where have you been?”, “these kittens you brought home have been a real handful!”. For the most part, she acted as though no amount of time apart could break our bond. She was the same with me then, as she has always been. Well, maybe she was a little more attentive and clinging, in the days to come. But, that’s what we both needed and it suited me just fine. I felt, in that moment, like my heart was once again full and whole. Even the broken part felt like it was beating and pumping just like it had before my event. Finally, I was home with her and the rest of my animal companions. Right where I belonged..

My husband and I also enjoy feeding the wild birds. These amazing creatures talk to me and are not afraid to be in our presence. They will fly very close to us and land on the feeders right beside us, chirping like they are greeting us or carrying on some funny conversation.

We also have a beautiful pure black cat, who I have affectionately named Missy. She decided that she wanted to live here, on our homestead, about three years ago. She started hanging around the barn in the warmer months and eventually found a comfortable spot in the lean-to, that is attached to the back of our hen barn. I openly welcomed her, as I always do, with any animal. She does a great job at keeping the rodents away from the barn.

She started to follow me to the garden one day and when the neighbour across the road saw us together, he made the comment that Missy used to live at their farm. He said he was glad to see that she was well but was sad that she no longer wanted to live in his barn, as she had made a nice addition. Personally, I think that she simply was not happy with the name they gave her. I tried calling her by her previous given name, Sparky, that same day. She did not look happy, at all! So, Missy it is. Lol

She now lives in one of our heated outbuildings, which of course, now has a cat door installed, so that she can come and go as she pleases. Thank you DW! The farmer across the road had her spayed and now I feed her and give her treatments to prevent worms and fleas and cuddles, lots and lots of cuddles. She never leaves our property. I don’t believe she has any desire to leave. My husband says that she knows how good it is to live here. Why would she leave? If I go outside, she comes running right to me. She is a beloved friend and part of our pack now.

We have two other indoor cats, who we named Berry and Jelly. They are litter mates, who have very different personalities. They are both very active and, at times, certainly do add a lot of comic relief to our days. Jelly is a very energetic and silly boy, who seems to frequently annoy his sister. She has very little tolerance for his tomfoolery and has no issue with putting him in his place, when he steps out of line. She is a very small and compact little girl but has the heart and will of a lioness. At times, I wish that Jam would do the same with him because he continually pushes her personal space boundaries. Mostly, I think this is because he is completely infatuated with her. If he’s not with her, he is looking for her. She is very smart though. She has found some very good hiding places. In fact, there are times when even we have a hard time to find her. For the most part though, she is very patient and tolerant with him. Until she’s not!! Lol

We got the dynamic duo, pictured above, from another farm in the area, when they were just young kittens. At the time of my heart attack they were only six months old. I am very glad that Jam had them as companions, as they were all mostly home alone, everyday, for a few weeks. They are loving little kitties and our bond with them is very strong.

We have not had a dog friend on the homestead since our little mix breed, Jessie, passed away, just before my heart attack. We have tossed around the idea of adding another dog friend, but considering my health issues it has just never seemed to be the right time. Between the wild life, our two laying hens, Waffles and Tiny, our three indoor cats, Berry, Jelly and Jam, and Missy in the “guest house”, it would seem that the homestead is well populated. One day, I am sure, another friend will find his or her way to our little piece of heaven. The funny thing is that 99% of the animal friends we have or have had, have been rescues or individuals who have chosen us, as their human companions. I believe that if it is meant to be for us to have another member added to our family, it will happen all on its own. Just like it has so many times before.

I am an animal empath and I am very grateful that I am. Especially now that I understand it! I am not some kind of freak of nature. Or someone who is being ridiculous and making things up. Or someone who needs to “grow a thicker skin”. I have a wonderful gift and every day is a wonderful new journey for me and my animal friends and companions. Getting to this point has been a process that has taken time and requires doing the work to gain more understanding. I am doing the work and I am enjoying the benefits and happiness that comes with it

For those of you out there who understand, I know that you can relate to the very special bond that can exist between two beings. To me, there is nothing in this world that feels any better than to give and receive true love, compassion and respect from another like yourself. I believe the feeling that comes with being authentic and real, in an environment free of all judgment, is a true gift.

I am so grateful for the bonds I have had throughout the years with all my animal friends and I know that one day I will be reunited with those who have passed on. They may be gone from this realm but they are not forgotten and they are truly missed. I think about them every day. There are times when I get sad that they are no longer with me, here in this life. When that happens, I remind myself that I will see them again someday and it will be a reunion like no other. Until such a day comes, I will hold the precious memories of them close to my heart!

As Always,

Love Tanya Jean

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As I slowly opened my eyes, struggling to get a clear view of my surroundings, I could feel this excruciating pain everywhere in my body. It felt as though I had been crushed in a press, like a piece of scrap metal being made ready for recycling. I could barely focus my eyes on the things around me. As the blurriness started to clear, I scanned the room trying to figure out just where the hell I was and what the hell happened to me. Is this a bad dream or is this real? At first, I couldn’t tell. I soon realized that it was very real and I was laying in a hospital bed. I was unable to move my arms and legs. The only thing I seemed to have any control over was just a little bit of movement in my neck.

There were tubes coming out of every hole in my body and there were a few new holes that had been made for more tubes and needles. I was intubated and had tubes in my mouth and down my throat. I was hooked up to a machine that was breathing for me and was connected to eight different other machines, all injecting life sustaining medications. I was very frightened and all I could think of was my husband. Where is he? Is he okay? My eyes scanned the room for him and then finally after what seemed like several minutes, I saw him. There he was, right by my side. Then I immediately thought to myself, well if I had been in some kind of accident, either he wasn’t involved or if he was, he wasn’t hurt. Either way, whatever is going on with me, he is here and watching over me, so I will be okay. Then I closed my eyes and everything went black again.

The next time I woke up, the extreme pain was still present and, in fact, it seemed to be worse, though I didn’t think that was possible. My right hand and arm was bandaged to the elbow and had some kind of brace on it to keep it from moving. It felt like there was something seriously wrong with it. I was so confused! What was all of this? What was happening? But, once again, I saw my love right there beside me and then, after a moment or two, I could hear my mother’s voice in the background.

As I focused, I thought to myself maybe I was in some kind of car accident and had been thrown from a vehicle. Or, maybe I had pulled someone through a car window, trying to save them. Maybe this could explain what happened to my arm. My right arm. The hand and arm I use to sketch and paint and create. What is wrong with my right arm? Why can’t I used it? Why wouldn’t it move? Maybe it got slashed open by the glass from a broken window? That must be it?

It seemed like a lot of time passed, though it really wasn’t very long at all and then my husband told me that I was here because I had a heart attack. This was confusing because I still could not understand why my hand and arm were wrapped up and why I was unable to move either of them. Then, I tried moving other parts of my body again and nothing would budge. I tried to speak. Nothing! I thought to myself what the hell is happening?? Then I remembered that there were tubes down my throat preventing me from speaking or making any sound at all.

Anyone who knows me would definitely say that not being able to speak, must have been one of the hardest things for me. Why you ask? Because I love, love, love to talk and sing and truly just make noise all the time! When I wake in the morning I start talking to whomever is present. It doesn’t matter who it is. I talk! It could be my husband or one of our three house cats, it doesn’t matter. It is usually Jam, she is our oldest indoor cat. She is typically lying right beside me on the bed. I start talking and singing in the morning and I do not stop until I go to bed. Unless I get into a good television show. Then I’m quiet, for a little while, maybe. Sometimes I even talk in my sleep! Just ask DW! lol

I thought to myself that this was going to be quite a challenge for me, not talking. I certainly hope it isn’t going to be too long until I am able to speak again!

Next I thought, okay, this must be pretty serious, and why can’t I move? Damn it! My husband could tell I was confused. After a few moments I started to remember going to the Moncton Hospital with chest pain, in a fast moving van, and then some pieces started to come back to me. Slowly, I started to remember the things leading up to the moment when everything went black, in Moncton.

He told me that I was in Saint John and I knew what that meant. It had to mean that I was transported there for ugent care and probably by ambulance. This must be serious? I still wasn’t clear on what had happened. But, it was enough information that I could at least process that it was really serious and I was not out of the woods yet.

My husband looked so tired but relieved to see my eyes open again. He told me afterwards that he didn’t want to explain everything all at once, as it might have been too much, too soon, for my mind to process. I agree, it would have been very overwhelming to have been told every detail of what had happened to me, in those moments. In fact, at that point, I had no idea that I had been in a coma for two weeks. I think that knowledge alone would have been very upsetting, in my fragile state.

He could tell that, even though I could not speak, I was able to understand what he was telling me at that moment. This was a huge relief because none of the doctors were really sure what level of brain function I would have when I woke. Considering how long I was in full cardiac arrest. It was a little over 35 minutes. Not to mention all of the other complications that followed, during the two weeks I was asleep and there were alot of them. My husband was told, on four different occassions, that he should prepare, as this could be it…

I will talk more about that in future writings.

As the hours passed that day and I started to understand a little more about what was happening. My husband started to talk to me about things we had done together and experiences we had. He started with things from way back, when we first met, and slowly and subtly, over a couple of hours, worked his was to the present day. I did not realize it at the time, but he was trying to get a feel for my cognitive function and memory retention. As the day progressed, it was a huge relief for him and a win for the doctors. My mind was showing good signs of a full recovery. As time passed and I worked through my lengthy rehabilitation process, my doctors and other medical professionals would perform many tests in order to find out exactly how much brain function I managed to retain. I have lost some of my abilities and capacity for memory retention, but, all things considered, I am very happy with progress I have made…

I have had to work very hard to get to where I am now! But, I am truly blessed to have the opportunity to truly live, this time around. My second kick at the can…

Stay tuned for the next post, this is a long journey and we’re just getting started.

In fact, my book, Bear It All, which we are planning to publish by this coming summer, if everything goes well, tells my whole story. I have started from my earliest childhood memories to present day, in explicit detail. It’s quite a story! Even I have a hard time to believe it sometimes, as I read through while editing and proofreading, and I’m living it! We are going to self-publish this first edition, as an e-book to start, then in paper copy as things progress. It will be available on the store page on this site as well as some of the more well known global platforms, such as Amazon Kindle. I will continue to post regular updates on our progress, as we get closer.

I thought maybe it would be a good idea to include a contact/pre-order form, at the bottom of this post, in case anyone would like to have an email notification when we are ready to publish.

With Love, As Always,

Tanya Jean

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I have fought many battles, but none as draining as fighting my own ego. My demons and my ego are the same. My ego has made me do and say things in my life that I regret. My bruised ego caused me to act in ways that I am not proud of.

I will claim ignorance is also to blame for my behavior, in some situations, because I had no idea that my ego was driving the ship. Ignorance is no excuse, however. All I can do now, is try to be the best human being that I can possibly be, going forward. I now know better and I am aware of what drives these undesired actions of mine. I have done and continue to do the work.

A great deal of my approach to life, during my 53 years on this spinning ball, has been about pleasing my ego. I now know that I am made up of much more, than just my ego. It is, however, what drove me to work myself to death. I think I did this in hopes of getting some recognition or praise for my accomplishments and efforts. Instead of being present in my life situation and accepting or choosing to be content with what I already had in my life. It didn’t seem to matter whether it was the loving people in my life or my accomplishments and possessions, I was rarely satisfied. Where did this come from? Was I born with it? Did I learn it or observe it? Can any of you relate to this? Has it happened, or is it happening to you?

As I understand it, from reading through some of Eckart Tolle’s teachings and theories, that, as he suggests, the path to true enlightenment and a state of complete bliss is in killing or overcoming your ego. As well as mastering and putting into practice the technique of present moment awareness. I believe his theories to be correct. In practicing and applying these principles and methods I have learned from him, I have discovered a new way of being. I will say, however, that putting my new found knowledge and techniques into practice, on a daily basis, is much much harder than it sounds.

To kill the ego, one must let go of all that is unnecessary in one’s life. Another huge component, I have found, is mastering the art of not giving a rat’s ass about what others think. Or, as many spiritual teachers have put it, “to free yourself from the good opinion of others.” I like the way I say it better. lol

Just imagine for a moment what your life would look and feel like without all of the extra pressure that comes with constantly needing more. More stuff, more love, more respect and more power. Wow! What a mind blowing concept!

If I could have let go of my need to please and my quest for praise and approval, maybe I wouldn’t have had my heart attack. Maybe, I would still be whole. Maybe my heart wouldn’t be broken. Maybe I would be living my best life on some beach, on a remote island. With the family I had created and not a care in the world.

Don’t get me wrong. I love my life now! But because of the life I lead, the habits that ruled me and the accumulative results, my life expectancy, on this plain, has been greatly diminished.

I struggle with letting go of my ego, even today. I know that if I let it, it would destroy me. But I won’t. I’m a fighter! I continue to do the work. My ego had all of the power for a very long time and now it has to fight to stay alive. I think it is willing to do anything to keep its hold on me. You know what I am talking about. It’s that little voice in your head that just won’t stop. It will drive you completely mad, if you let it!

So I will continue to fight my ego! I deserve to be whole and happy for however long I have left on this plain and so do you!

Be mindful of that little voice. Just recognize that it’s there. Become the “Observer”, as Eckart says. I have found that doing this has really helped me to carry on being consciously present in each day.

With Love Always,

Tanya Jean

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As I said in my last post, everything went black after the second spray of nitro was given to me. The last words I spoke were to call my mother. If I had to do it all over again, those would not have been my last words to my husband. As he was calling my mother I went into full blown cardiac arrest in front of his eyes.

One of my main arteries was blocked one hundred percent. As far as the doctors could tell, a piece of plaque broke off in one of my arteries. As far as they could tell it must have wedged and then my body’s natural repair system kicked in and started to clot where the plaque broke off. The problem was that it clotted and blocked the entire artery so there was no blood flowing to my heart.

The doctor and his team worked tirelessly on me for a little over thirty five minutes to try to bring me back. They gave me a clot buster hoping that would open the artery, even if it was just a little so that my heart would start to pump again. Shock after shock my husband stood watching my lifeless body. The medical team tried to get him to leave, but as I said before, my husband is a large strong man and if he doesn’t want to do something no one can make him.

I am glad they couldn’t make him leave. I could feel him mentally calling to me and I to him. I believe if he had left the room that day, I probably would not be alive today. He was saying “don’t leave me”. I heard him and I hung on to that with what strength I had. Our connection has always been strong but I had no idea of its incredible power.

As the team was about to give up, the lead nurse suggested to double up the pads and shock me one more time. They did just that and stood back hoping that would do the trick. My husband said it was like nothing he had ever seen before. It brought me right up off of the stretcher, with limbs fully extended and eyes wide open. After that, as my husband kneeled on the floor beside my lifeless body, trying to find the words to say Good bye, while one technician in background muttered under his breath, “just call it already”. I guess he didn’t realize my husband was on the floor next to me. The Doctor asked for one last check for a pulse. To which the nurse replied, she had a pulse. It was faint and very weak but there was a pulse. This was much to everyone’s surprise and relief!

During this crazy time my husband had to call my mother a second time and told her if she didn’t get there soon, I would be gone. She was working for my brother at the time and she said she was waiting for someone to come and relieve her of her duties, if you can imagine. If I was told my daughter was dying and I needed to go to her, nothing would stop me from leaving immediately. That’s my family for ya.

My mother showed up made a rude comment to my husband and then came over to my side and told me that I needed to pull through this because there were people who were depending on me. I guess she must have meant herself. However, I was still in darkness. She was speaking to my lifeless body that was barely clinging to life and fighting to hang on.

Once a pulse was found, the doctor came to my husband and told him that if I had a fighting chance they needed to transport me to the Saint John Regional Hospital immediately. This hospital has the best cardiac care unit in New Brunswick and if anyone could help me it would be them.

The doctor said that he did not know if I would make the trip but they had to try. My husband wanted to go in the ambulance but there was simply not enough room. A nurse would have to go along with the ambulance crew. He was told he would have to follow along behind and if he had anything to say to me, he better say it now because there was a real good chance that I wouldn’t make it and this could be the last time he would see me alive.

The EMT said if my husband saw them on the highway pulled over to not approach the ambulance, that they would be working on me and they would come to him, it would not be safe for him to approach.

My husband said his good bye to me and we left for Saint John. He quickly gave instructions to his brother on how to get the dogs that were still in the van waiting to be groomed home safe. They would not be groomed on that day after all. I always kept a scheduling book with me that contained all of my customers info in it, thankfully. I am so thankful he was there in our time of need. I am forever grateful!

Once the dog situation was quickly handled my husband grabbed my mother’s car keys and headed to Saint John with her and my mother-in-law on board. He was but couple of minutes behind the ambulance. All the way watching closely in case the ambulance was pulled over on the side of the road.

I was later told that the car ride to Saint John was the most quiet, intense and fast ride any of them had ever had. He said he was so thankful that he never came across the ambulance stopped on the side of the highway. Upon arrival at Saint John Regional, he stopped the car in the middle of all traffic at the entrance, jumped out and sprinted inside to find me, leaving the two mothers to deal with the car and parking..

I woke from a comma about two weeks later…

A lot happened in those two weeks but that part of my story will have to wait for another day.

As Always, With Love,

Tanya Jean

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Buckle in this is going to be a long read.

So I have written some tidbits about my cardiac event in earlier posts and I think now would be a good time to share a bit more.

I had been feeling extremely tired for a year or more before my event. I tried to loose weight by changing my diet and the quantity of my food intake. I also starting getting up earlier in the morning to go for walks to try to get my metabolism going. But everything I was working so hard on seem to fail.

My thought was that I was going through menopause which was making it hard to lose weight and why I was always feeling so tired, all of the time. I have always ate well, maybe I am just eating too much, was my thought.

I went to my family doctor and asked for some help to loose weight. I told her that any tips or suggestions she could offer, would be greatly appreciated. I also explained that I was feeling very tired and just generally felt unwell. She suggested a full blood work up and gave me some pointers for weight loss and then sent me on my way.

When the results from the blood work came back, she called me in for an office visit. She told me that the results came back showing that all of my levels were great. All be it, I was over weight I was in good shape. Her advice was to keep trying to get some weight off, reduce my stress and go enjoy living my life to the fullest. So, I tried to do just that.

At the time, I was eighty pounds heavier than I am now. I did not have high cholesterol or diabetes, in fact for the most part, my doctor thought that maybe it was, just as I had suspected, stress and menopause.

The thing about stress that I did not take into consideration is that as it builds over time it has an accumulative effect. We, as humans, take on stress and then we get used to that level. Then we add a little more and we get used to that new level and so thru the years it accumulates to what we then consider normal. Then eventually, your body says, okay, I have had all I can take and then you start to feel physically ill. My doctors think this is what happened to me.

Personally, I think it was the stress of never feeling like I was ever good enough, that caused what happened to me. The doctors too believe that this is what happened, but really do not think it can be proven.

I internalized how my family treated me and I felt like nothing I ever did was ever good enough for them. I was constantly told how to act, what my beliefs should be and was made to believe that my feelings did not matter. I had to build my grooming business three separate times, with no help, except from my husband, but that wasn’t good enough to gain their respect. I would drop whatever I was doing to go to my mother’s aid and that was never good enough for her. She always found something to complain about or give me a hard time about. It could be because I did not spend enough time with her in her mind. It could be anything really. My father would be upset if I did not attend some function or call him to inform him of what was happening in my life so he could answer inquiring questions from individuals, that we both knew. I just stopped calling him because he never really listened to me and never really seemed interested anyway. He just needed to seem like he was in the loop, for appearance sake. My brother and father would have what they called a family night and never once invited my husband and I. The list goes on and on. Yet I would continue to give my time and effort, over and over again, to go to there aid. Or, follow them around like a lost puppy to events of there choosing because it was good for appearance sake.

Eventually, I felt the stress of never accomplishing or completing any of my own projects and interests. This is because I was always busy helping or doing things for others. I could usually be found cooking and cleaning or entertaining, either at my home, or someone else’s. I was always helping others with their projects, while never finishing any of my own. I would have been okay with it, if it had felt like my efforts were appreciated and they showed some compassion or sent some love my way. I never felt that. I felt distain and disappointment from them, always.

I internalized all these bad feelings and thought to myself that, I must not be doing enough or it was because it was not perfect. The next time, I will do more and make it better, then they will love me. It was never enough for them though and I guess it just simply never would be.

When my doctor talked to me about stress, I just figured she meant I was working too hard. The thing I realize now however, is that after awhile, not only was I trying to be enough for my family but I started doing this with everyone I would come into contact with. It just became a motto for me and I still struggle, even today, with thinking I am not enough, or I am not doing enough. It is a real sickness and an extremely hard thought pattern and habit to break.

I feel that people like to judge what they think they know. But please remember that I have lived this horrible reality. Ignorance is bliss in judgmental eyes. But the pain in mine is real.

Approximately three months after visiting my family doctor, I woke early, as I always did, so that I could be ready to leave the house by six thirty in the morning. I liked to have the chores done before I started my day because by the end of the day I was too tired and did well to get a shower and supper before retiring for the day. You see, I had my grooming shop on the property that we now reside on. We live about twenty five minutes from town and I provided a pick up and delivery service for my clients. This was extra work but I enjoyed my drive, it helped me to prepare for my day. The route is very scenic and it would give me time to have my morning cup of tea.

It was November 28th, 2017 and the Christmas rush was about to start. For those of you that have dogs that require grooming on a regular basis, you understand that you need to book in advance if you want an appointment as close to Christmas as possible. Everyone wants to have “Fluffy” smelling good for Santa and any company that they may have over the holiday season.

This particular day I was extremely glad to have only four dogs booked because I woke feeling very unwell. My thought was that I could get these four dogs groomed and them back home by lunch. Then, afterwards, I would do some Christmas shopping, seeing as I hadn’t started yet. The rest of my working days were booked solid until Christmas. I could get a good start on my shopping and it would ease the craziness of the holiday season for me.

My unwell feeling seemed to be discomfort in my chest and I was even more tired than usual. I thought maybe I was having some indigestion from the previous night’s lasagna. So off I went, to pick up my furry friends for a fun morning of scrubbing and beautification.

As my pick ups went on, I started to feel worse and worse. Driving home I felt slightly sweaty and I remember thinking to myself that maybe I should pull the van over. My next thought was that I was nearly home and putting the window down would ease this feeling. The fresh air felt good and it was only another two miles and I would be home and in the driveway.

As I pulled up the driveway my husband was still home and loading up his truck to start his day’s work. He came over to the van as I parked and looked at me with an odd stare. His comment was that I did not look well. My response was that I did not feel well at all and blamed it on our meal from last evening.

He said maybe if I left the dogs in the van for a few minutes I could walk around the yard and it may make me feel better. If it was indigestion. I agreed, but as we started to walk I suddenly felt the need to go to the washroom as I felt sick to my stomach. I rushed to the bathroom and yes you guessed it I brought up the contents of my stomach. As I exited the bathroom, I felt like I was staggering and fell upon the couch because I knew if I had stayed standing it wouldn’t be long before I was on the floor.

As I landed on the couch my arm started to feel weird. I told this to my husband and he immediately asked which arm. You guessed it, it was my left arm. He grabbed me and practically carried me to the van, because I had no strength to walk. I was 265lbs of dead weight and looking back I don’t know how he found the strength. Good thing he is a big and strong man.

He got me in the van and we headed to the hospital, and yes, the dogs went too. He is an extremely safe and relaxed driver but on this day he was safe and fast. Normally from our home, the drive to the hospital would take approximately twenty five minutes. We made it in about thirteen. It is a good thing too, because if we had to wait for an ambulance to come to get me, I would not be writing this today. We pulled up to the emergency room entrance on two wheels I think. At least it felt that way.

My husband got me into a wheel chair and rushed me in. I was grasping my chest and at this point having difficulty breathing. There was an elderly man seeing the triage nurse. The nurse got one look at me and asked the elderly gentleman to have a seat in the waiting room. I don’t think he was impressed because he moved very slow and with distain. I remember hearing my husband saying, “please, hurry sir she is all I have in this world”.

My eyes filled with tears as I heard him say those words. The nurse took my blood pressure and quickly asked what was happening and she rushed us back to triage.

The medical staff quickly stripped me down and started hooking me up to all kinds of wires and tubes. I was scared! I could feel the tension in the room and the look on my husbands face said it all. I said to him that I thought he should call my mother. I knew my condition was bad, I just didn’t realize how bad. Until they gave me the second squirt of nitro. Then everything went black.

Well folks, I hope you will stay tuned for the next post, there is more to come, much more!

As Always much love,

Tanya Jean

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Why my desire to help?

I have had many jobs, I waited tables, worked in kitchens, did odd outdoor jobs, worked as a secretary, car saleswoman, drove courtesy vehicles, travelled selling meat door to door, call centre work, chambermaid, motel clerk, made crafts and art work to sell and I finally settled on being a pet groomer. This career lasted 25 years for me. It was my passion and I loved it!!

After I had my heart attack, I was no longer physically able to groom. As a result, I have felt lost and saddened that I can no longer continue in my career. I really enjoyed working with all the animals, but in particular, with those who were considered to be difficult individuals. Some of the owners were at their wits end and needed help. I felt that I could really connect with those animals. Being able to communicate with them and gain their trust gave me great joy. I truly miss grooming, but I believe that my time in that profession has run its course and now it is time for me to help other beings in other ways.

All of that being said, I have not been able to work outside of our home to earn an income for the last five years. Because I was self-employed, I did not meet the proper requirements to collect any benefits from the government since my heart attack. My husband has supported me this whole time. Thank you and bless you DW.

After I had my heart attack, there were so many people who have and continue to help me to get back on my feet again. Sooooo many people working day and night to get me thru this difficult time in my life. It is because of these individuals and their efforts that I have worked so very hard at getting better. To me, if they were going to put all they had into helping me , it was important that I work as hard as I could. I want to show them that their efforts were truly valued and appreciated.

It was just shortly after I started the cardiac rehab program at the Moncton City Hospital that I realized I wanted to give back, in some way. I wanted to continue to be of service to others who needed a little compassion and encouragement. As I worked through and completed this valuable program, I got to know the nurses who give so much to their work . I began to share the details of my story and, upon completion, I was asked to give talks about my unique experience for other patients, as they completed the program. The idea was that if the other patients heard some of the details of my story and saw that I survived after all of my complications, that they too could pull through and overcome their own situations.

The talks I gave were very well received and I loved interacting with those who would approach me afterwards. Some of them just wanted a hug and some of them wanted to share some of their experiences and all of them wished me well and said that hearing my story did give them hope. In return, in sharing with and getting to know them, I gained a sense of belonging and purpose.

I want to take this opportunity to thank all of the medical professionals who give so much everyday! I want to thank them for all they have done and given in order to care for me and the many others in need. You all are truly amazing people!

It was a true joy to feel that I was once again making a positive difference in peoples lives. Unfortunately, due to the pandemic, we could no longer continue with my talks. I truly miss having this experience, maybe someday we will be able to resume and I will have the opportunity to connect with others who complete the program.

The wonderful loving staff who work so hard to provide this amazing program have encouraged me to write a book about my story. They felt that this would be a good way to reach many more people than just those who have attended the Cardiac Rehab program. They encouraged me to continue to make an effort to connect with those who were in need of some positive reinforcement and encouragement. So they too can overcome and really live their lives.

So, here I am. I am writing my book and sharing my story with all of you, trying to make a positive contribution in this crazy world.


My book is progressing nicely. We are now in the editing stage and are getting closer to publishing with every week that passes. Our plan is to self-publish, most likely as an e-book initially, and then follow that with a paper copy, as sales progress. We are currently in the process of setting up our online store for my book, artwork and other products, which will be ready soon. In the meantime, if you have interest in any of my work, you can reach out to me through our contact form below and on our Contact page.

Thank you!

With Love Always!

Tanya Jean