My God greatly blessed me with life when He formed me in His Perfect Hands, 41 years ago. I was born with Cystic Fibrosis (a progressive and terminal genetic lung disease) I was diagnosed (as a baby) at 1 years old. My mom and dad were told to just take me home and love me because I wouldn't be around long, but they refused to give up on me.....they refused to give up on God.
CF has been the biggest blessing in our lives as it has granted our family a constant reminder of our need for our Lord, which caused us to hold fast to Jesus Christ through trust and fervent prayer and as I grew sicker, having to give it all to Him, as the world didn't show us much hope.
To sum up a lifetime of rocky roads and health struggles......Before my transplant, my lungs were functioning at only 17%, I was completely oxygen dependent, connected to a machine 24/7. I was homebound, as my immunity had so greatly dwindled and I walked very slowly without assistance, but could not climb stairs or stay on my feet for more than a few minutes....My hair fell out and I could barely eat because my body was so sick. Even talking took everything out of me...I could not even get through an "Our Father" during our family prayer time.
We always prayed for God to be glorified through my sufferings. We offered all of this beautiful cross that He had given to me, back to Him to do with whatever He pleased. We knew that God would be glorified through my healing, but would this be an earthly healing or one that would come as I was taken home to Heaven? Accepting these two outcomes, I pondered whether I would live long enough to make it to transplant.
Thursday, October 13th, I realized that I had caught a virus. I was put back on another round of IV meds to fight off the infection. I had never shared some of my fears with my family, but on Friday, October 14th, I finally told Jeremy that I thought that I was going to die. We both decided again that our Lord would be truly honored either way and that we had to just trust and let go. Two days later, Sunday morning, October 16th, the phone rang as our Lord revealed to us how He had chosen to be honored....it looks like it would be an earthly healing!
We yelled to the kids to come downstairs and we stopped everything and prayed together. My heart was racing my body was trembling and I didn't know what to do next! Jeremy instructed the kids to take care of the babies and told me to go and do a treatment before I hyperventilated!
We packed our bag and headed for UT Southwestern. I cried the entire way there in disbelief as we called our families on the phone!
WAITING AT THE HOSPITAL
We arrived at the hospital and then the waiting began. There are many times when after being called in, a transplant recipient could be sent home if the lungs do not look good to the surgeons. It's one thing to see a report on the status of some lungs on paper but these lungs needed to be looked at physically before anything could be certain. As we waited, the surgeons flew out in a helicopter to examine the lungs and bring them back for my transplant
A FEW PICS FROM MY ACTUAL SURGERY
These are my old lungs on the left (surgeons hand on right) All of the spots is the disease
My new and beautiful lungs.....look at the difference! That is pretty amazing
THE SURGEONS AT WORK
(beware...these might be sensitive pictures for some....I just had to share as I am in awe)
There must have been 20 people in the room at least
My very first full breath after my surgery (with one of my doctors...I love them all so much....they saved my life and truly loved me and cared for me all of the way through) I was a pile of tears in joy and thanksgiving as I always told my children that the first thing that I always dreamed of doing when I finally got to see Jesus in Heaven, was to take the biggest breath ever....well, you know what....just because He can....I got a little taste of heaven on earth
I will be filled with lifelong gratitude for my donor who has offered his life to now breathe for me, giving me a new life
These are my new medications(4X per day).....it's a lot but so totally worth it
PRAISE TO YOU OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, KING OF ENDLESS GLORY