Saturday, April 14, 2007

Cystic Fibrosis - The Story

When I was 3 weeks old I was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis, which is the # 1 genetic killer in children. My parents were told that the average life expectancy of a CF patient was between 18 - 24 years old.

Part of CF meant having very thick mucus, pneumonia, digestive problems, having to take enzymes with each meal to digest my food, and problems gaining weight. I had to be extremely careful if I caught a cold or the flu because it can very easily mean hospitalization. To help loosen my mucus, my mom had to give me chest physio therapy for 20 minutes, 2-3 times a day.

Tube Feedings

I had to have tube feedings for the first two years of my life.
This meant that my father had to replace my feeding tube every two weeks by pushing it up my nose, down my throat and into my stomach. He had to be careful that it would not go into my lungs or else it would puncture my lungs or stomach. Which if punctured lungs/stomach aren't dealt with immediately it will be fatal. The whole scenario of tube-feedings was very hard on both my parents. My mom who is a very emotional person as it was, could not be around when my father put in the feeding tubes. My older siblings tell me that Rebecca & me would scream for quite some time. All from the pain of the tube getting put in. It was always my fathers job to put the tubes in, and then my mother would be gotten inside to comfort us as babies/toddlers. This went on for the first 2 years of my life. Mostly all my baby pictures have a tube & tape on the side of my face just like the photo above.

My family was introduced to some nutritional supplements in December 2002 and within 6 weeks my need for digestive enzymes were reduced my 70 percent. And after 4 months I was completely off enzyme medication that had been a daily experience all my life.

My mucus became thinner, which is amazing - because it's not suppose to according to medical professionals. My weight gain problem improved big time which shocked my doctors, because we were now actually on the growth curve. We were getting better and better and our doctors mouths just kept dropping lower and lower.

It's amazing how the body can heal itself when given the proper tools. I praise God every day for this miracle He's brought into my life and the life of my 2 sisters that also had the same struggles and results with these supplements that I had.

Now I know I'm healthy enough to get married one day and have children of my own knowing that if God tarries his coming I'll see them grow up and get married and have children of their own. The first picture of me above is me leaving the hospital after an amazing clinic where all I heard was GREAT news! Praise the Lord!

I just want to say thank-you to my parents who at first were quite skeptical after years and years of searching for ways to help us and keep us alive but tried it anyway, and most of all to God Almighty who watches over me everyday, I love you!



charlie said...

Awesome girl!!!! Agree with u on Mel's babe!! Live for God!!!

Kathy said...

Hi, I just stumbled into your blog while browsing...your story is amazing!! I can't believe how much your condition improved. have you see the blog title "confessions of a CF Husband."?? There is a link to it on my page, but their story is amazing too. She's currently in the hospital and slowly improving, but it's pretty incredible to read about!! I think you'd like it!!