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Saturday, March 3, 2012

SATURDAY SAYINGS: INSPIRING FINAL YOUTUBE VIDEO BY BEN BREEDLOVE


Happy Saturday
, Everyone!

This is a bit of a different post for Saturday Sayings. It is about something that hits close to home for me personally, but is also inspiring, though bitter-sweet. So, since this day kind of lends itself as an open space on my blog, for things other than the norm you usually find during the week, I wanted to share it with all of you.
(images via Pinterest)

I am sure many of you may recall hearing about a 17 year old boy from Austin, TX who died on Christmas Day named Ben Breedlove. I first heard about it while watching the news a few days later, and then, learned more about it in detail after reading his story in People magazine.

If you don't know, he was born with a rather serious heart condition known as Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM), but lived his life to the fullest, with happiness, joy and smiles, never letting it stop him, or bring him or others down. Something anyone who knew him expresses most when reflecting on his life.

Ironically, he had made and posted a 2 part video on his TotalRandomness512 YouTube channel just days before his death, expressing his life story and condition. A condition that hasn't gotten much coverage or awareness until now, but that I am so glad is more widely understood because of him. His video wasn't discovered by anyone until the day after his death, making it all that more powerful, especially to his family and friends...I can only imagine.

Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy hits all too close to home for me, knowing someone in his 20's, who also happens to live in Austin, with the exact same condition, whom we almost lost during the summer of 2010. All doctors and EMT's said it is a miracle he is still here, and CPR was key in saving his life. His heart stopped completely, on more than one occasion, and he was shocked multiple times with "no heartbeat detected," but no one gave up on him!

The person I know was a big part of my life and someone I spoke of often on this blog, but who did not know he had the condition until that almost fateful day on June 11th. After which, his family and I were by his side, day in and day out for 2 weeks, while he was in the ICU in serious condition, as well as when he pulled through and got the same pacemaker and defibrillator implant Ben had.

Much of what we experienced during that traumatic time for us all is what Ben himself expresses he remembers from his incidents as well. However, not just once did he "cheat death," as he says, or have to experience everything, but on three separate occasions in his life, prior to the day, and 4th time, when it ultimately took his life. Unfortunately, some don't take the condition as seriously as I think it needs to be taken.

So, when I heard the news about Ben, I was unable to view the videos that he had posted about his story and heart condition, which had gone viral, because I knew I was not in a place, mentally or emotionally, where I could handle hearing it. Fearing having to almost relive the experience I went through, second hand, once more. Especially knowing how the mere mention of that heart condition causes anxiety to this day.

That said, on Wednesday evening, Leap Day, I sat down and watched Part 1 & 2, though not planned, after randomly coming across another video on YouTube linking to them. The videos filled me with emotions, on a personal level, that I can't fully explain to anyone. Emotions I know so many others around the world felt too while viewing it, but for different reasons.

So, today, I want to share both parts of Ben Breedlove's story with those of you who may not have seen them, as well as with those who have. All in hopes of offering a little reminder, something we all know, but often take for granted, when getting caught up in the routine of it all...
... and whether or not you believe in angels or God, as questioned at the end of part 2, you must never forget to tell someone that you love them, and always remember that even when life doesn't always seem so bright, you can still try your best to hold a positive outlook, live life to the fullest, be thankful and simply smile, just as Ben did until his very last day!


This was all somewhat therapeutic for me. So, thank you for taking the time to read this, if you did, and to watch the videos. I realize this was a lengthy post, having nothing to do with fashion or creative things, as I said above, but with a message, along with my personal thoughts and feelings, which I have been wanting to express for some time now.

You see, after the summer of 2010, I wanted to write about the condition to bring awareness, around the time I posted the importance of CPR on my blog, but was never sure how, or if it had a place, here on my fashion blog, for me to go into further detail.

So, in a way, Ben's tragic, but yet, bitter-sweet and inspiring, life story and positivity, is what inspired me to do just that. Get it out there, here for Saturday Sayings. With that I would also like to say, thank you to anyone whom it may have reached.
(image via Pinterest)

Sending smiles and hugs to you all! I hope you know how much all of your support means to me, in general on here, and just how much I appreciate each of you for taking time out of your day, every now and then, to even stop by my little blog! You are all wonderful! :)


13 comments :

  1. This is such a touching post. I did not know of the condition but definitely appreciate that you have brought it to attention. Thank you. And thanks to Ben. May he always be remembered.

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    1. Thank you so much for stopping by, and for such a nice comment! :)

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  2. Liesl, my love.

    I love that you side tracked from fashion, I love when the comfort zone is stepped out of and its raw, and beautiful. Thank you for sharing a part of your heart, I watched it when it went viral. What a sweet boy. What a sweet message. I watched it right after my friend took his life, and it healed something I guess. Your post takes me back, but in a good way.

    I know CPR. So you don't have to worry about me;)

    You're wonderful, and I am so thankful that your "person" got another chance. Sometimes it's all too breif. I know this too well lately.

    Saturdays are a great place to stop by your blog, even more so now.

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    1. This comment means so much to me, Shaylynn...your support in blogland has been truly amazing, thank you! :) Yay for knowing CPR...I rallied a bunch of friends to re-take it again myself! Your blog is always lovely as well and has brought me more inspiration than you know! Sending lots of love and smiles your way! <3

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  3. Oh my gosh.. this made me cry. Such an inspirational and touching post. Thanks for sharing.

    xx
    leslie

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  4. Ah, I knew I was going to cry yet I still watched those videos. It's so great of you to put this out there. My heart hurts for his family, but I can't even believe how happy he must be. I am SO glad we know he his happy now to be in that place he never wanted to leave. CPR is so powerful and I'm glad they didn't give up on him.

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    1. Thank you for such a sweet and thoughtful comment, Brooke! I simply adore you and your blog, and your support means more than anything! :)

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  5. I love this post :) Reall inspiring! Thanks so much for this.. I'm off to watch the video clips :)

    Kisses! xxx

    ilikeyourears.blogspot.com

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  6. Life is short... God only knows what our future holds and we should live each day as it is our last. xoxo A-

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  7. A beautiful post and a great reminder - life is fragile. We all want to make our mark on the world, but the most important thing is to spread love...

    Thanks for the reminder!
    xx

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  8. I know how hard that was for you and remember when everything happened. I think it is so great for you to write about that... you are so strong! xo

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  9. Thank you for your comment, I really love Zara too!

    http://voguesweetvogue.blogspot.com/

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  10. such a brave and touching post--you have such grace!

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Thanks so much for stopping by and taking the time to look at my little spot in blogland!

I welcome all comments and thoughts and look forward to hearing from you! :)

by Liesl Ehardt