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TAKE HEART
Welcome
The Charity of the Yorkshire Heart Centre
TAKE HEART
JILL HARRISON
Hi, thanks for visiting my page, I really appreciate all your support and thank you for any donations. You can donate by clicking the Virgin logo at the foot of this page. Below is my story... In March 2014 my mum sadly passed away of Coronary Heart Disease.  She was waiting for a heart bypass, unfortunately time just ran out... To say it was the most devastating experience of my life is an understatement, nothing prepares you for such a massive loss.  I miss our chats on the phone, I miss her telling me what to do, even though I haven't lived at home for years, to her I was still her little girl. In fact I miss everything about her.  I still want her to come back and yes I know she won't but that doesn't stop me wanting.  Having grown up with 2 older brothers, my mum was my ally, no offence blokes, but you're not so good at thinking about others and knowing what us girls like.  My mum was so thoughtful, always thinking of others and never herself.  It all started at the tender age of 12 when she helped my Grandad Ron bring up my Uncle Stu after my Grandma suddenly walked out....that must have been so hard for her, I can't even imagine how that felt.  She continued caring and made it her profession, training as a nurse at Jimmy's in Leeds.  Seeing the number of people at her funeral was so touching especially all her previous colleagues from her nursing days and the stories they told of her and how lovely she was, always prepared to roll her sleeves up and get stuck in.  Mum was only 5ft 2 but she was always the strong one of the family even during her last year when she spent a number of spells in hospital, never wanting anyone to go out of their way to come and see her.  she always said she was fine, never showing her vulnerable side.  I love my mum so much. I've always wanted to complete a triathlon, so I decided to stop thinking about it and just do it....someone asked me which I was best at, swimming, running or cycling...my answer.... I've never really been good at any of them...Therein  lies my challenge!!! I'm generally more into doing stuff with people, playing football being one of them and my training is a bit hit and miss at the moment, I firmly believe I can do this.  On the 31st August I will be competing in my first (will it be my last?!) I have decided to raise money for 2 charities that mean a lot to me. Coronary heart disease is the UKs single biggest killer,  it is responsible for over 74,000 deaths a year, an average of 200 every day.   After seeing the great facilities and the care she received the first charity is called Take Heart who are a little known charity for the Yorkshire Heart Centre at LGI.  Take Heart raise money to make life for patients, staff and relatives of the Heart Centre more comfortable.  During what is a very tough time they try to help alleviate some of the anxieties which weigh heavily on patients and their relatives.  These are just a few of the projects they have supported:- They have provided relative suites for relatives who live outside of Leeds so they can be with their loved ones at a critical time during their operation, bedside tv, internet and phone calls to help make patients lives easier and to stay in touch with the outside world and state of the art machines for the catheter labs. For those of you who know me well, I love dogs...a lot!! During my life I have had the great pleasure of spending time with 3 Labradors, all with very different personalities.  We had Sandy when I was growing up, a yellow lab I let her on my bed, made a fuss of her, she had a mind of her own....when she was older, my dad was walking her on Farnhill Moor, Sandy has other ideas....she took herself back home!!! Holly was my first dog, a black lab, she once chewed my brick like Nokia phone...I was not happy but it didn't stop me loving her any less.  I shouldn't have left it out!! She moved into my first house with me, was very protective of me and her bark sounded so vicious when someone came to the door...when I opened it, it was different story, wagging her tail like mad! She grew up with my nieces who all rode on her back, sat on her, pulled her tail...she loved every minute of it, she was so placid. Pepper or PepperDog as she is affectionally known is a bit of a nutter, another yellow lab she's cheeky, nudges me and stares at me when it's time for a walk or  food. She loves cuddles and often climbs on my lap when I'm laid on the settee. To say Pepper loves water is a understatement, she launches herself into any water she sees and it still makes me smile everytime she does it.  I still miss Sandy and Holly, they gave me so much pleasure which Pepper still does.  I can't even explain how much Pepper has helped us all through our grief and continues to do so.  She came to the funeral, and was so good at every point, knowing when to sit and be quiet and even made us laugh when the celebrant asked the congregation to stand...Pepper stood to attention immediately! So to say it makes me sad when I see that not all dogs have the same experience as mine upsets me.  The second charity I'm raising money for is the Dogs Trust at Leeds, they do a fantastic job of taking care of dogs and finding them a forever home, whatever their breed or age.  It would make me very happy to know any money I raise will help some dogs become happy, healthy and ultimately find a family that can love them as much as I love Pepper. Thank you so much for supporting me in this challenge, it's not going to be easy and I need to get my training back on track...I will because when I get my determined head on I don't give up.... Life throws some really difficult challenges at us sometimes and I'm trying to turn my experience into doing something positive.  I'm sure you've heard this before but it really is true.  Cherish every moment you have with your loved ones and make lots of memories....you'd wish you had so many more when they're not here anymore and unfortunately it will be here sooner than you think xxx
Thank you for your story Jill -  Your grief will eventually fade but, as is often said but is so true,  those we love will live always in our hearts. Thank you so much for your effort in raising money for the two charities. We appreciate it very much. Colin Pullan, MBE, Chairman