Clive Smith lived an active lifestyle. He was involved with Football in his young adult life and continued to be a busy and energetic man even taking on the role of President of the Waterloo Minor Hockey Association. His lifestyle of raising three children kept him and his wife Nicola on the go shuttling them from Hockey to dancing to soccer and everything in between. On top of that, Clive was drawn to the high stress career of planning and execution for his own sports consulting business.
He had been having unusual indigestion for almost a week and his sleep was disrupted with a numb and tingly arm but those didn’t seem like warning signs for anything in particular so he settled in to sleep.
It was in September of 2009 just coming off of an extremely successful 75th anniversary reunion weekend and moving towards another tournament filled weekend that Clive’s hectic schedule was interrupted.
He had been having unusual indigestion for almost a week and his sleep was disrupted with a numb and tingly arm but those didn’t seem like warning signs for anything in particular so he settled in to sleep. On the night of Thursday, September 25, his shortness of breath woke him up, and he noticed that the other symptoms hadn’t gone away. Not wanting to bother anyone or create any panic, he asked his wife to bring him to the hospital rather than call an ambulance. When he arrived at Grand River Hospital, they immediately drew blood and he was told “You’ve had a heart attack”.
Clive promptly picked up his blackberry and cancelled, delegated, or postponed his busy weekend schedule to make time for the treatment he needed. More follow up tests and an ambulance escort and he was admitted to St. Mary’s late Friday night. Over the weekend the staff made sure he and his wife were educated about the angiogram procedures that he was about to undergo and were available to answer questions and keep Clive comfortable.
“The staff at St. Mary’s all deserve a big thank you for everything they did for me and my wife. They made sure we knew what was going to happen and that made it easier to stay calm”.
On Monday, when he was brought into St. Mary’s Cardiac Catheterization lab, he learned that he had one 50% blockage and one 80% blockage. Stents were inserted and Clive returned home on Tuesday.
In November, Clive entered the St. Mary’s Cardiac Rehabilitation program and has learned about the factors that lead to his heart attack. “Always being on the go means that your meals aren’t planned and you just pick up something quick, usually junk food”.
Now Clive prepares more food in his own kitchen and has learned from the nutritionists how to avoid hidden salts and fats. He has lost over 30 lbs and has set a goal to lose even more. He is still a busy man, but he carves out time for his own fitness, nutrition and education about his health.