I would like to enter my submission into the 25th year anniversary portrait contest. I am 30 years old, married and have 2 loving, fun puppies. My 5 year wedding anniversary is approaching, and I would love to have a portrait of my family as we are today (including my doggies!). I was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis (CF), which is a genetic condition, at 1 month old. This condition affects many organs of the body including lungs, pancreas, and liver. The main effects of CF include chronic lung infections, lung tissue damage and digestive issues. As a child, I was in the hospital about every year to be treated for lung infections. During high school, my condition stablized. During college, I met my wonderful husband and CF decided to show its ugly head. After college, I was in the hospital yearly for lung infections and my lung function dropped to 50% of normal capacity. My husband (then boyfriend) stuck with me through all of this and proposed marriage in July 2005. We were married on 9/16/2006. About 2 years after we were married, my lung function plummeted even more. I ended up having to have surgery to remove one lobe of my lung due to infection and I am now using oxygen 24/7. I had to stop doing a lot of the physical activities we enjoyed (skiing, biking, hiking, travelling). My lung function is now about 27% of normal capacity. I am also currently listed and waiting for a double lung transplant and on disability from my job. Through all of this, my husband has been by my side, has been my rock, and I want to do something to preserve where we are in life today, since we are unsure what the future holds.
I know this sounds like a sob story, however, I do enjoy life. I feel lucky to be alive and I can't wait for this adventure called life to continue after my lung transplant. I love to help people and after transplant I would like to get into patient advocacy. I have an amazing family that keeps me positive and happy and I want to have something to look back on to remember the important things in life - love, family and laughter.