What to do when I cannot be an LJ

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Forum topic by Jimthecarver posted 03-08-2009 04:49 AM 1731 views 0 times favorited 40 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Jimthecarver's profile


1124 posts in 3961 days

03-08-2009 04:49 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question

I have had the unpleasant experience of a 4way by pass heart surgery at the young age of 44.
Last week I thought I had a bit of acid reflux, I went to the emergency and was informed it was a major heart attack.
I couldnt believe it, being a guy that watches his diet, am not a drug user or drinker. I did smoke a bit but the doc said it was a heriditary desease. Although the cigs got thrown away nevertheless.
So what the hell does a guy do when all he can do is look at them tools and remember when the saw dust was flying?
The doc says I will not be able to work and must by all means take it easy and let the healing begin after being cracked open like a chicken.
Ok enough of the cry baby stuff and back to healing and dreaming of someday returning to being an LJ.
I am truely greatful to be sitting here able to at least type….ok I didnt say spell…
Long live Lumber Jocks!

-- Can't never could do anything, to try is to advance.

40 replies so far

View RobH's profile


465 posts in 4225 days

#1 posted 03-08-2009 05:06 AM

Sorry to hear about your heart attack. I hope everything goes well for you. Just remember to do what the doc says do. He really does know best. The tools will still be there when you are done recovering. I’ll keep you in my prayers for a speedy recovery.

-- -- Rob Hix, King George, VA

View lew's profile


12382 posts in 3931 days

#2 posted 03-08-2009 05:14 AM

It will seem like a long time, but spending time here at LumberJocks will keep you “in the loop” and help the time pass more pleasantly.

Speedy Recovery.


-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View CharlieM1958's profile


16278 posts in 4394 days

#3 posted 03-08-2009 05:25 AM

Jim, sorry to hear about that, but it could have been worse, right? You’re still here! I’m sure the sawdust will be flying in no time.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View Gary's profile


42 posts in 3654 days

#4 posted 03-08-2009 05:25 AM

I know many people who have been through this. Go through the recovery process and hopefully you will be able to ease back into it a little at a time. Best wishes and all my hope to speed you along the way, Gary.

-- Gary, Missouri

View John in SD's profile

John in SD

140 posts in 3988 days

#5 posted 03-08-2009 05:35 AM

Hang in there buddy….......your on the downhill slide back to your carving now. You’ll be back at it before you know it. Just glad ya got it behind you instead of ahead of you.Best to ya.

-- Life used to be soooo much simpler!!!!

View dennis mitchell's profile

dennis mitchell

3994 posts in 4490 days

#6 posted 03-08-2009 05:38 AM

Hope you recover soon, but not to soon. Take the time to heal. Try and enjoy…keep free of depression. You really can grow to enjoy oatmeal.

View ajosephg's profile


1880 posts in 3736 days

#7 posted 03-08-2009 06:19 AM

Don’t give up brother, you never know for sure what the future holds. I too had a heart attack in January, and had many of your same feelings.

There are a number of folks in my rehab class that have experienced surgery similar to yours and they are slowly but surely regaining their strength. Don’t give up and don’t give or sell your stuff! You will be able get back at it sooner than you think!!

One of the things that helped my frame of mind was to stay plugged into and tap into this humongous support group.

Let me know if I can give you any “long distance” support. (I really mean it.)

-- Joe

View Sawdust2's profile


1466 posts in 4263 days

#8 posted 03-08-2009 06:40 AM

I’ve got four friends who have had heart valve replacement surgery, two had their chests cracked, two had some sort of surgery where they operated between beats.

They were all back about 80% in about 8 weeks and 100% in six months.

I’ve had 4 heart attacks and a stroke. Had my first 25 years ago when I was 40.

It’s only as debilitating as you want it to be.


-- No piece is cut too short. It was meant for a smaller project.

View douginaz's profile


220 posts in 4178 days

#9 posted 03-08-2009 03:29 PM

Had my first one at 40, now I’m 53, You might be down now but keep a positive attitude, it is the best medicine. You are probably on all types of meds, those will taper off and once acceptance sets in you will pull though and gain some gratitude. I hated not being able to drive and being treated like I was some sort of fragile flower. This too shall pass. Move forward with the knowledge that the medical community has a pretty good record with this type thing – they do know what they are doing when it comes to the mechanical stuff. I don’t mean to sound preachy here but I’ve been there done that – you will get past this quicker than you think- throw yourself into the problem and you will be making dust before you know it. Depression is the killer – stay positive and treat it like a fight – go after the bastard.
Doug in AZ.

-- If you need craft books - please visit our small business at

View mmh's profile


3677 posts in 3898 days

#10 posted 03-08-2009 03:57 PM

Even if you currently can not work with machines and heavy objects, you can keep yourself busy and creative with small projects. Draw some projects, research ideas via the internet and books. See what others are creating via online searches and look up the history of the project. Eventually you can work on 3-D forms using clay models (natural clay or synthetic modeling clay) or basal wood carving, etc. You may even try another type of craft that isn’t too demanding on your health, but will still allow your creative juices to flow.

Take care of your physical health, and also your mental health. I look forward to seeing your postings, whatever they may be. Best of healing to you.

-- "They who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night." ~ Edgar Allan Poe

View Praki's profile


201 posts in 4172 days

#11 posted 03-08-2009 05:59 PM

Sorry to hear and hope you recover soon. Focus on getting better first. I have known quite a few people who have recovered completely from heart attacks. You should be able to resume woodworking soon. In the mean time, Sketch Up is one possibility.

-- Praki, Aspiring Woodworker

View poopiekat's profile


4384 posts in 3910 days

#12 posted 03-08-2009 11:43 PM

I really didn’t notice the title of this thread until the second time I browsed.
Jimthecarver, you always will be a Lumberjock, whether or not you are fit and able to keep busy in your workshop. There have been a few topics lately regarding the cardiac experiences that many of us have had to endure, myself included. In fact my first event was at the age of 46. After going through the monitored exercise therapy program, and some very valuable counseling sessions with hospital staff and guest speakers, I eventually learned that my heart attack was a ‘gift’ survived it Jim, and as you heal you can accept your new realities. Concentrate on your loved ones, and the things that really matter. devote your remaining woodworking years to producing items that bring joy to the faces of people you love. Your abilities will all come back, I promise.

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

View Betsy's profile


3391 posts in 4071 days

#13 posted 03-08-2009 11:49 PM

Once a Lumberjock always a Lumberjock!

Speedy recovery Jim.

-- "Our past judges our present." JFK - 1962; American Heritage Magazine

View SteveKorz's profile


2139 posts in 3889 days

#14 posted 03-09-2009 12:09 AM

Hang in there… Look at all the stuff you can explore in LumberJocks till you heal. Talk about RELAXING!!... See there, you’ve got it made…

Wishing you a speedy recovery-


-- As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. (Proverbs 27:17) †

View cabinetmaster's profile


10874 posts in 3734 days

#15 posted 03-09-2009 12:21 AM

Wishing you a speedy recovery Jim. Like they said above “Once a LJ, Always a LJ.” Just think: you can look at all the posts and start making a list of all the things you want to make after you are fully recovered. Maybe by posting a lot of comments everyday you can become the number one LJ and take Karsons place….........LOL

-- Jerry--A man can never have enough tools or clamps

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