As a teenager I was diagnosed with progressive autonomic failure and pseudo obstruction. I was unable to eat and digest food properly. I was nauseated all the time and had a lot of pain. Various treatments and surgeries were done to try to treat the disease and give me a better quality of life. When these treatments didnt work and my health started to further decline I was referred to Pittsburg to be evaluated for a transplant. In August of 2005 I received a modified multi visceral transplant. This consisted of a small bowel, duodenum, stomach, and pancreas. As a result of complications I developed chronic rejection and had to be retransplanted in March of 2007. I was finally able to eat and my pain was gone! I was able to absorb nutrients from food so I experienced energy I never knew I lacked! My life had changed in so many ways and I didnt take it for granted. I returned to work full time and began taking college courses to finish the degree I had started just out of high school. I also married and was able to be around for my 2 nieces and 2 nephews to be born! Currently I am being worked up to be relisted for another modified multi visceral due, once again, to complications. I cherish life. I am beyond blessed to be where I am today. I advocate for organ donation passionately. Without the selflessness of my donors I wouldnt be here now. Everyday I think of them and their loved ones who must miss them terribly and hope they are proud of me and know how appreciative I am to have received their gift. Many people tell me im a hero but its not true. The donor who said yes to organ donation is the true hero! Because of their gift I was given the opportunity to make more memories with my family and hug them each and everyday. That is priceless!
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