Prior to being diagnosed with a rare terminal autoimmune disease and a lifespan of 5yrs, Tee lived a vibrant life as a God fearing wife, corporate woman, mother of 2 college kids, and dance instructor to over 200 kids over the years. Up until her illness, she dedicated the last 15yrs of her life working full time during the day and sharing her passion for dance when teaching on evenings and weekends to kids regardless of their ability to pay. Tee would always say, “I can’t, I have dance”. On weekends, she would have an SUV full of girls, headed to a performance, dance competition, or shoe fitting. Never having been ill, this diagnosis devastated Mrs. T, her family, and her students. Tee’s passion to teach dance, the love for her students, and the hope of seeing her son and daughter graduate from college, has been her motivation to keep moving.
Beginning of 2017, Tee began to visually dissipate as her weight dropped from 150lbs to 98lbs. March 2017 a Crohn’s & Ulcerative Colitis diagnoses resulted in the start of her 2017 hospital admits, Day 25 in the hospital, her colon ruptured and she woke from surgery with no large intestine, no rectum, no colon, an ileostomy bag, and no longer able to use the restroom in a normal manner.
May 2017, hospitalized with the start of renal kidney failure. June 2017, her job deemed her a medical nightmare and terminated her leaving her with no medical insurance. A few days later, hospitalized again and diagnosed with Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis (PSC), a rare terminal bile duct disease that keeps her liver from producing to the rest of her body. July 2017, Dr’s said she needed a liver transplant due to the aggressiveness of her PSC. August 2017, things got worse requiring surgery to remove cancerous cells covering her digestive tract.
Fall 2017, Tee was listed as a Liver Transplant patient and told she would most likely not get a new liver for 4-5yrs and would succumb to her illness. October 2017, hospitalized again for surgery to clear strictures in her bile duct. November 2017, emergency surgery to repair bowel obstruction and creation faux rectum.
With her illness attacking her other organs, our sweet Tee has been hospitalized a minimum of 2wks every month, endured 13 surgeries in 15 months and requires ongoing routine surgeries to keep the strictures in her bile duct clear. A journey she describes as mentally, emotionally, physically and financially exhausting.
Praise be to God, on June 19th, we received the phone call, they had a liver for Tee. Following her liver transplant, 3 weeks in the ICU and 3 weeks on post transplant ward, Tee is now home and starting the recovery process. She is bed ridden and home confined for 6 months, but in good spirits, as her Physical therapist, Occupational therapist, and Home health nurse work on getting her mobile, walking, moving, and functioning again.
Financially, the family has exhausted their savings and all financial avenues to pay out of pocket for Dr’s visits, hospital parking, specialist, labs, test, medicine, and therapy. Tee sells on eBay and other sites but it’s not enough when faced with medicines that cost $500 - 1500 and having to decide between eating, getting medicine, or utilities.
Tee has an amazing support of friends and family members who have helped in keeping her spirits up and she expresses how grateful she is from the bottom of her heart. Should anyone have extra, $1, $5, $10, $15, $20, $25, $50, or more, and feel like they can help, it would be appreciated. No pressure if you can’t help as your prayers are much appreciated too!..... As Tee would say, “Rolling with no colon, blessed, and ready to get back to work and dancing!”