As we all deal with the craziness in our world today, I hope you can take a moment to sit down and read my annual letter about a remarkable woman and her past year. Andrea will turn “35” on March 27th and although we will all be celebrating from a distance, we have a lot to celebrate!!!
This past year has been filled with so much living and many new adventures. Andrea passed her real estate exam and LOVES her new career as a realtor with Compass Realty. The flexibility of real estate allows her to find balance in taking care of herself, her family and having a career that is fulfilling. Two weeks ago, Adam, Andrea and Bryce moved into a beautiful home that they renovated over the past year. Their first celebration will be her 35th birthday followed by her 5-year lung anniversary in May (and of course Bryce’s 5th birthday in April!).
Andrea’s health issues this year have mainly been due to sinus problems. She has had three sinus surgeries since her lung transplant and is constantly fighting sinus infections. The great news is that Andrea has received a new medication, Trikafta, after anxiously awaiting for it to be approved. This new "miracle drug" has been shown to help transplant patients with severe sinus and gastrointestinal issues. There is also a new anti-rejection medication that Andrea started just a few weeks ago (she is on anti-rejection medication for her lung transplant). Envarsus is effective without being as toxic to the kidneys. In just 3 weeks, Andrea’s kidney function has already improved.
And finally, the last advancement for Andrea this year has been a new glucose monitor for her blood sugar. She no longer has to stick her finger numerous times a day to monitor her need for insulin. The Dexcom G6 continuously monitors her blood glucose and sends alerts to an App on her phone if she is having a high or low (which can be very dangerous). This has really been significant in improving Andrea’s ability to manage a very important aspect of her health.
All these new medications and devices that enhance Andrea’s life COULD NOT be possible without donations and funds raised each year to pay for the research needed. I’m thrilled to report that we met our goal of $10,000 last year and we hope we can do it again to make Andrea’s birthday wish come true. Thank you again for being a part of Andrea’s life and helping her live each and every day!
In closing, I would like to leave you with these wise words from Andrea (who is in the highest risk group), as we are faced with COVID-19:
“The ability to adapt to change, adjust to a new reality, let go of what was and create a new sense of normalcy is the secret to happiness. It’s not something you’ll find at the end of a treasure hunt. Happiness is a state of being you create within yourself despite what is going on around you. I’ve been quarantined many times in my life. After my lung transplant, I couldn’t leave my apartment for a month. During chemo I stayed home for most of the 4 months and during the countless hospitalizations as a CF patient, I lived in a 10 x 12 apartment. Guess what? You can still enjoy a good meal, a pretty view, and a good book because you are alive! It’s not easy simplifying your life but it’s an opportunity to slow down, examine priorities, be grateful for the air in your lungs and the love in your heart. Stay safe, stay healthy and stay happy.”
Linda and Robby Levy
(Proud Aunt and Uncle and G-dparents)