Q&A with Chloe Temtchine
Singer / Songwriter / Performer
Family Office Insights sits down with Singer/Songwriter/Performer Chloe Temtchine where she opens up about living with severe Pulmonary Hypertension and how she lives every day to the fullest due to her unfailing positive attitude and healthy lifestyle.
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Firstly, can you share with our readers your story about your disease?
After being misdiagnosed by some of the most world-renowned doctors for five years, I was finally diagnosed with severe Pulmonary Hypertension, with the likelihood of pulmonary veno-occlusive disease. I was in right heart failure (the right side of my heart had grown to three times its normal size), and I was told that I didn't have much time left to live and that I may never leave the hospital.
When was that a-ha moment when you knew you would fight this?
I would say that it all really hit me when was I told that there was nothing that could be done for me. As corny as it sounds, when no one else can save you, you really do have to do all that you can to save yourself.
What is Pulmonary Hypertension and what are your symptoms?
PH is high pressure in the arteries of the lungs. These arteries become blocked, narrowed or destroyed, causing the heart to have to work much harder than it should. This causes the right side of the heart to become enlarged and can lead to heart failure.
Why is it so important for you to tell your story and get the word out about PH?
The first reason is that if people can be diagnosed before their PH becomes severe, then medication can really be of help. Since the symptoms of PH mirror those of so many other diseases, it is a very difficult disease to diagnose. Many doctors haven't even heard of it. The second reason is to help raise money for research so that there may ultimately be a cure. One day soon, I hope.
How does your positive attitude affect your outlook on life?
I believe that there are always two ways of looking at any given situation. Despite the fact that I'd much prefer to not be going through any of this, I'm also very grateful that as a result of this, life has become so much more meaningful to me. I'm also very grateful that I have music as an outlet. It's really helped me live in a world in which PH doesn't exist.
Can you tell us about the concerts you do for the Chloe "PHriendraiser"?
I performed at a “PHriendraiser,” which we called “The Zombie Apocalypse.” These are events that we create with the intention of bringing awareness to PH and of raising funds to find a cure. They are definitely not traditional fundraisers. At this last one, for example, everyone, including Steve Martin (my oxygen tank), was in a costume. We bring in all sorts of different acts like spoken-word poets, comedians and so on and then I perform my set of six or seven songs. Our goal is to get the message across in an entertaining way.
How are you working with private donors, brands and other supporters to help further your message?
I've performed, and continue to perform, quite regularly for brands, pharmaceutical companies and fans. I'm very much at home on stage.
What’s next for you in your life and your career?
I'm currently working on my third album and performing around the U.S. I continue to follow my five principles, which I adopted once I was diagnosed. I truly believe that these five principles have helped bring me back to life. They are: nutritional lifestyle (I'm now vegan and eat only organic foods); exercise; creative expression (writing and performing my music); family and friends (spending time with those who matter to me most and focusing on having a great time rather than on anything negative); and mindset (keeping my mind in a positive place and remembering that I can get better no matter what I'm being told.)
YouTube Sensation, Award Winning Singer/Songwriter, recipient of the PHA Inaugural 2014 Chloe Temtchine Be Brave Award, & the Tom Lantos Innovation in Community Service Award, and a passionate advocate of the Pulmonary Hypertension Research and Diagnosis Act of 2014, New York City based, Temtchine is fiercely committed to raising awareness about Pulmonary Hypertension (PH) via entertainment. To learn more visit, www.chloetemtchine.com