Giving Thanks for 2011!

Rather than reflect on the highlights of 2011, I prefer to share with all of you the many things I am grateful for at this time of thanksgiving. If you are receiving this note, I am grateful for YOU!

As you know, 2011 was a very trying year for me medically.

Every month of 2011 I spent time with my wonderfully loving and supportive family, lots of fun friends and fabulous clients, but also…doctors (some old, some new), nurses, and in at least 6 of the past 11 months, an IV in at least one arm and/or a monitor on my chest! (Did I mention I am allergic to the adhesive?!)

Mom, Lauren and Dad at the ACHA Walk, May 2011

I will spare most of you the details, which are included here on my blog. The fast-forwarded version goes like this: May – Memorial Day weekend, I had an ovarian torsion (lay term: twist) resulting in emergency removal of my left ovary followed by a few days in cardiac ICU.  For my survival of this near catastrophe, I must thank my mother for finally taking me to the ER and Dr. Marc Siegel, my new fave GYN who I’m sure was happy to meet me at 3 a.m. on a holiday weekend.

In June and July I struggled with atrial flutter (abnormal heartbeat) and underwent two cardioversions (“CLEAR!”) at the Washington Hospital Center.  For my ability to know what was wrong, I am thankful for my common sense and for Dr. Ross, my cardiologist (and graduate of St. Ambrose and Elizabeth Seton High School – my mom’s alma maters), who reminded me “only you know your heart.”

August was very nice.  I went on a whopping three-day solo vacation on Fenwick Island.  For this I am thankful to a client, and friend’s aunt, who set it up as a trade for overseeing her move to Maine.  Not a bad gig!  Upon my return from that vacation with myself I met a guy who has made me extremely happy.  Needless to say, I am very thankful for Patrick!

Patrick & Lauren on the Riverwalk at Boudro's!

Then came September, and with that, more atrial flutter.  This time we determined I would be treated by a cardiac ablation by the Chief of Cardiology at Children’s National Medical Center’s Adult Congenital Heart Program.  As it turns out, enough kids like me have survived well into adulthood and created a new medical/nursing specialty, which brings me back to Children’s after nearly 26 years. Many thanks go to Dr. Charles Berul, after whose handiwork I am ablated and grateful and…best of all…in normal rhythm!  It was a very long first week in October at Children’s, but I cannot ever thank my family enough for being there every single day or for calling, texting, and sending flowers…for the good nurses…and for wonderful friends & clients for their visits, cards, laughs, care and concern!

My heart after cardiac ablation!

With all that in mind, I am thankful this year for the circle of life.  Friends getting married.  Friends having babies.  Friends about to get married.  Children I have cared for since birth heading off to college.  The world is better place because of you – my family and friends and friends who are like family.

Many blessings in the year ahead, and much love,


HAPPY NEW YEAR!                                                                                            

Here’s to 2012!  703.963.4009


All Aboard the Santa Railway Express!

Dear Adventurers,

Join me aboard the 7th Annual Santa Railway Express!

Click here for full color flier:  All Aboard the Santa Railway Express!

Guaranteed to be good clean fun with Santa on a round trip train ride from King Street Station to Old Town Manassas.

Mondays in December the 5th, 12th and 19th

Train departs at 1:25 and return at 3:30.  Don’t be late!

Visit Whistle Stop’s Facebook page for details!