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    • #11043
      Kathleen Sheffer

      Over the course of my journey with pulmonary hypertension, I made many close friends who have the disease in common. Unfortunately, my deep connection with the community has led to frequent losses of my friends with PH, or “PHriends.” Losing a PHriend evokes layers of emotions. In the case of close PHriends, I experience intense grief, missing that person’s presence. If I don’t know them as well, the stronger emotion is often fear for my own life.

      Support groups have helped me with my grief because sharing stories of the people I have lost can be restorative. Hearing others express similar emotions has normalized my pain. I welcome other patients and members of our community to use this forum as a way to grieve losses, whether it is the loss of a PHriend, family member, or a loss of independence or identity.

      Addressing loss and grieving is the only way to move forward. We do not leave our loved ones behind, but rather, carry them forward with us.

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