After a near death experience and debilitating illness, Cheryl knew it was time to turn her life around beginning with a written personal account of her story. She is a former library director and a survivor speaker for the American Heart Association, where more information about her experience can be found at their “Stories from the Heart” website. Her contribution to the field of Library and Information Science includes several published articles in addition to a co-authored textbook. Besides working on her second book related to Broken Heart Syndrome, she enjoys lecturing about the subject, practicing yoga, and meditation.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
I'm inspired daily to help others better understand what it means to be diagnosed with a disorder such as Broken Heart Syndrome, a rarity in the area of heart disease. I have a burning desire and duty to help the world know the facts. Likewise, I also am a living witness considering I have experienced it firsthand. What I know for certain is that the state and condition of a person's illness is greatly affected by their belief system and their attitude. Finding a way to be inspired by life, its beauty, glory and purpose, makes all the difference in turning the tide on a debilitating illness.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I spend the majority of my time working with children, they offer the greatest opportunity to explore the wonders of life.
For the approximately 715,000 people experiencing heart attacks each year, roughly 2% are Broken Heart Syndrome related with women being far more vulnerable than men, carrying the greatest risk to those ages 50 and older. Cheryl's story provides hope for change in the survival rate with helpful resources that can be used to avert the fallout from the damages of stress that plague modern society.