The Most Inspirational Cystic Fibrosis Journeys
The wonderful thing about humanity is that people can choose to “think themselves into another person’s shoes.”
When one does this, a fine thread of compassion connects one life to another, and it’s easier to genuinely care about how they’re doing. In some miraculous manner, we share in their life’s pleasures and feel the weight of their burdens.
UCO media collaborated with the Just Breathe Foundation to make a short award-winning video called “Three Lives,” a documentary about cystic fibrosis. Through this, we have the chance to meet three people who share how cystic fibrosis has impacted their lives. Below are the stories of some truly brave individuals who have faced this disease:
- Jennifer Hale's story: Through the writings of Jennifer and her parents, we become a part of her moving memoir. Family photos are included in their book There Are No Alligators in Heaven! A Family’s Perspectives on Surviving the Unrelenting Savagery of Cystic Fibrosis. This memoir was copyrighted in 2007 and was published by Starshine Galaxy Foundation NFP. It can also be found online. In 1974, at the age of two and a half, Jennifer was diagnosed with CF. She passed away at the age of 43 in 2015. At the time of her diagnosis, 15 years was the average life span for someone with CF, but Jennifer well exceeded that, living to marry her husband, Mark Hale. In 2014, Jennifer’s father died of lung cancer, and for a final interview that was to be included in the book, Jennifer’s mom sat with her husband two days before his death. The book was given four stars by the Portland Book Review.
- Kori’s story: Kori shares how she thought she would never be able to make it through her teen years and how precious life is to her. She is now 36, knowing that, currently, the life expectancy is about 37 for adult Americans with CF. Kori is upset that she cannot have a biological child with her loving partner, but still tries to remain positive. According to her, life will either crumble you or help you grow. This acts as the catalyst that makes you who you are.
- Jasmine’s story: Jasmine was tenacious, upbeat, and never let any challenge stop her from doing what she wanted. When her school principal and family pastor had concerns about the physical activities Jasmine was interested in, they turned to her mother for input, and Jasmine’s mother always had a positive answer. She took part in various activities such as playing the clarinet in the school band and bowling in the church youth league, where she was known as a true champion.
- Kyle’s story: When he was two years old, Kyle was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis. He worries how difficult it is to find a partner who will support him and the needs of his medical condition. So, along with CF, he has to deal with his concerns about a long-term relationship. Kyle’s story shows some of the unexpected side effects of this chronic disease.
- Briana’s story: Briana wants those battling with CF to be inspired by her and urges them to stay strong. She herself felt locked down. However, she likes to sing, play the piano, and perform at local public events. She believes people should do what they like and not let their medical condition hold them back. She is very expressive and casually states that her mucus is getting thicker. She finds comfort, though, in nestling the fur of her long-haired pet dog.
Many drugs have been approved for the treatment of CF, and clinical trials have shown positive results for new ones that could be of even greater benefit for patients.