I was diagnosed with COPD at 37. I went to my doctor to get tested because I noticed that I was always out of breath. At first I thought: What am I going to do? How am I going to fight this?
So I decided to quit smoking right away. It was hard. Cigarettes have always been an emotional thing for me. I smoked when I was stressed or had anxiety.
I started smoking when I was 13. I smoked a pack and a half a day for almost 25 years. Last year, I spent the whole summer in the hospital because of lung infections and pneumonia. When I got out, they suggested I got to pulmonary rehabilitation.
This place (pulmonary rehab centre) gives me a lot of things. It’s a place to go where I feel comfortable working out. It gives me camaraderie – you know you’re not alone with your disease. I drive 45 minutes each way, twice a week, just to come here. But it’s worth it. Without this place, I would be at home, wasting away.