30 Days of PH: Retirement

30 Days of PH: Retirement
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Day 18 of 30 Days of PH⁣ Topic: Retirement⁣ ⁣ This is Marcia’s story:⁣ ⁣ I was diagnosed with PH in July of 2005 after having symptoms for 15 months and told, “it’s just asthma”. After going into left heart failure, the cardiologist performed a right and left heart cath to find what was going on. With no explanation, he told me I had severe PH and go see this other doctor. He was a PH specialist from UTSW, one of only 8 in Texas. ⁣ ⁣ I was teaching 4th grade, this was summer. I was hospitalized in the 1st week of school. I planned to take 90 days off to get meds and back on my feet. At the end of the 90 days, I was too sick to go back to teaching. I applied for disability retirement since I was 3 years shy of retirement. I was officially retired from 25 years of teaching by the end of the year.⁣ ⁣ At 51, I was too young to retire and too sick to work. I had never been seriously sick, part of my brain was in denial that this would have a bad outcome. I was thinking about what I wanted to do with my new phase of life. I thought about volunteering, but with good days and bad days, it was hard to commit.⁣ ⁣ I learned all that I could about PH, I ordered the PH Survival Guide. I read the PHA message board regularly. On PH Central, I talked with other members. My first conference was in Minneapolis in 2006, I took my husband. He was depressed seeing the patients on oxygen and in wheelchairs. For me, it's like a family reunion seeing all of my PHriends. Learning all I could about PH gave me a sense of control. ⁣ ⁣ Trying to use my teaching skills to help others in the PH community. I volunteered to work the phone and as a mentor.I helped our Dallas SG leader until she died and I took it over. I worked with the FW leader, to continue the annual PHun Walk to raise money and awareness. These things gave me a sense of purpose, sorely lacking after having my career and lifestyle ripped away so fast.⁣ ⁣ 14 years later and retirement age has mellowed me. I now enjoy retirement with quilting, reading, traveling, and enjoying my grandsons.⁣ ⁣ #30daysofPH #retirement

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Jen Cueva is a columnist and forum moderator for PH News Today. She was diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension (PH) in 2005. Before PH, Jen worked In nursing, then the script changed. Advocating and meeting those with PH has always been an important part of her life. Her passion is to instill hope and remind others in the PH community that they are not alone. In her weekly column, she delves into the rollercoaster of emotions that come along with PH. Jen lives on the Texas Gulf Coast with her husband and mini-schnauzer. Together we PHight stronger.
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Jen Cueva is a columnist and forum moderator for PH News Today. She was diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension (PH) in 2005. Before PH, Jen worked In nursing, then the script changed. Advocating and meeting those with PH has always been an important part of her life. Her passion is to instill hope and remind others in the PH community that they are not alone. In her weekly column, she delves into the rollercoaster of emotions that come along with PH. Jen lives on the Texas Gulf Coast with her husband and mini-schnauzer. Together we PHight stronger.
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