Saturday, February 25, 2012

Cystic Fibrosis...

Cystic Fibrosis (CF) is an inherited chronic disease that affects the lungs and digestive system of about 30,000 children and adults in the United States (70,000 worldwide). A defective gene and its protein product cause the body to produce unusually thick, sticky mucus that:

clogs the lungs and leads to life-threatening lung infections; and
obstructs the pancreas and stops natural enzymes from helping the body break down and absorb food.
In the 1950s, few children with cystic fibrosis lived to attend elementary school. Today, advances in research and medical treatments have further enhanced and extended life for children and adults with CF. Many people with the disease can now expect to live into their 30s, 40s and beyond.

That is what Kristina was born with. She will deal with her disease her whole life unless a cure is found. And praise God they are close. We knew Kristina had Cystic Fibrosis when we adopted her and we did a lot of research to know if we could provide the best medical attention for her needs. And yes, we could!

Kristina has been healthy overall, however she has been sick a few times...but thanks to her awesome doctors at Children's Respiratory and Critical Care they get her feeling better in no time!! Kristina has to do treatments 2-4 times a day every day depending on how she is feeling. It is done by her breathing in medications through a mask connected to a nebulizer and also a vest that vibrates on her chest. The vest does what her lungs should do. She has been doing these treatments since she has been four years old and is really good about doing them and knows how important they are for her health.

Here is a website Cystic Fibrosis Foundation that has lots of interesting and up to date information on CF. In an effort to raise money for the foundation there are various fundraising events for people to participate in. This year our family will be participating in the Great Strides Walk. It's a walk sponsored by family and friends to raise money for finding a cure! There is a spot on my side bar to donate to the CF foundation to sponsor us. Our team name is Butterflies for Kristina. This year the walk is on May 19th...a special date for us since it was five years ago that we traveled to Serbia to meet and adopt Kristina. It is a special blessing.

Also we have a sponsor who will donate a percentage to our team. Cards for Any Moment will donate to us because they believe in children and want to support families that adopt or have special needs. I have a click on button to shop that is located on my side bar. I think they are the cutest things! They are little cards that you can slip to someone or put in a place that would be a surprise. Just a neat little way to say so many different things. Like love, reminders, encouragement and more...just check them out and see what fun you could have!

Kristina is our daughter, a gift from God, and we would do anything to help her live a long life. The predicted median age for a person with CF is in their late thirty's. That is only 29 years away give or take a few years. Not long...will she have time to finish college, get married, have kids or a career? Will she have time to travel? Will she have time to live? God willing she will...she would have a much better chance with a cure. Again we knew that Kristina had CF when we fell in love with her, we knew the statistics...but when God says here is your child you just go and get her! And I will say this...her birth mother gave her up so she could live. She is counting on us to keep her alive. She loves her daughter but could not give her the medication that is available here in the US. I will remember her last hug with Kristina before she handed her to me...I watched her walk away...

Please think about how important life is and how most of us take it for granted. How breathing just comes without problems for really something to think about. If you can't donate I understand, I really do! But then can I ask you to pray for us, pray for the walk, raising money, but most of all the health of our precious daughter! Thank you!

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