Friday, August 29, 2008

I'm HOME!!

That's right...after 7 days in the hospital, I was given the 'yes' to go home today! I am so happy to be here, I just arrived and it feels great to be out of the hospital... I can't wait to sleep in my own bed tonight :)

How am I feeling, you may ask? Well, I am definitely feeling tons better than when I was admitted last Friday... However, I'm not fully better and I have another few weeks ahead of infection fighting and strength-gaining recovery to do. My lung function is still down, and my breathing is still short off and on. I am digesting my food better, praise the Lord, and I am no longer coughing out blood (sorry if that is too graphic for ya'll). So since I started to make some progress, and the docs know that I will take very good care of myself at home...they let me come home to enjoy the comforts of home plus home IV medications and treatments.

What's the plan? I will spend the next week completely at home, I've been instructed not to work or expend too much energy (I promised my doc as he graciously wrote the orders for me to leave, haha). The goal is to take care of myself as they did for me in the hospital which means I will still work do 4-5 breathing treatments a day to keep clearing my lungs, 3 antibiotics (2 through an IV) and maintain little bits of exercise and eating well to keep my body strong (that won't be hard because the food at home is a million times better ;).

Some thoughts/prayers for the next few weeks...
I wish that I could say that I'm back to normal, 100%, but that's not the case and it's going to take some patience as my body continues to fight this infection. I ask for your prayers once again, as this is almost a more difficult battle being more on my own. Being in the hospital is hard, but is a huge help because a whole staff is there to take care of me and help me when I'm not feeling well. Being home, I am more independent and it takes energy to remember my meds every 6 hours, do my breathing treatments every 4 and somehow fit the eating and sleeping in :). I've done this before, and my parents are awesome, and will be graciously helping me...but I ask for your prayers to pray that my body will heal and continue to gain strength as the infection continues to go away...I've made LOTS of progress so here's to another great week of getting me back on my feet.

You are loved...yes, YOU!
I don't know how to thank EACH of you for the incredible support you gave me. As I lied in bed each night in the hospital it could have been so easy to feel alone, the hospital is a difficult place...But each time I felt that, I knew that there was love and support pouring out from friends and family, and I knew that I had a community of people and my loving God to walk through this beside me. Living a life with CF is not easy, but having people to "live" it with you makes a world of difference. Thank you all for being with me when I am full of energy and feeling great, and when i'm battling the reality and severities that CF brings, I am incredibly lucky and joyful to have each of you a part of my life :).

I'll keep updating the blog as I progress, but for now, I am just glad to be home to eat dinner that my wonderful mom cooked! Hope you all have a WONDERFUL Labor Day weekend...leave a comment to tell me the fun things you did, if you want...i'll post here and there :)
Thank you for being with me throughout the week at the hospital, I am so blessed.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Thursday...a good day

I thought I might be going home today, but alas it was not meant to be. I enjoyed my day today, the best part of the day was that I got to sleep a full 8 hours last night without being interrupted!! That's pretty rare in the hospital, but being on this new floor, the nurses are used to have CF patients that are for the most part, stable. Therefore they don't have to check vital signs (blood pressure, temp etc) every 4 hours and they let us sleep!! I was shocked when I woke up at 8:30 this morning :)...The day started out great!

I was given great care and being on this new floor and in a new room is a world of difference :). I had a great time hanging out with my mom and then later with Brynne and Steve, good friends of mine. I am so glad to have had company to spend some time with...

I'm off to bed, I'm having a little difficulty breathing so if you read this, I ask for your prayers that it will end quickly and i'll go to sleep shortly...And I've been told that tomorrow may be the day I get to go home :)...Let's hope so!!
Love to all-

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

A New Room!

At the end of a VERY busy day with docs/specialists, more x-rays and blood tests, I was finally moved to the "CF Floor". This floor is a MUCH quieter floor with lots of nurses and respiratory therapists that are comfortable and knowledgeable about Cystic Fibrosis. I've heard great things about this floor, so I am glad to be here and even more glad that I'm at the end of the hall with no noise outside my door... :)

I'm also starting to feel better, for the first time i'm taking deeper breaths and getting more oxygen- so we'll see if this helps me get home soon! I'll keep my blog updated.
Here's to some good sleep tonight!

Busy Day Today!

Life never stops here in the wonder they don't put locks on the doors, otherwise I think patients would lock people out just to get some sleep!! I know I would :)

It's been a busy day today, I've met with the Rheumatologist to assess my CF-related Arthritis, gotten more x-rays, and I should be meeting with the ENT to assess my sinus issues too. I'm so glad to be getting all this done and meeting the specialists I need to meet before going home...It's a few less things I need to do when I'm back into normal life and getting all the tests they want done now, makes it so much easier. I might as well get everything done while they've got me in one place!

I'm going to attempt to take a nap now, but we'll see how that goes...haha :)
Happy Wednesday, friends!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


Today was a great day! I met with my doctors and the entire CF team, (see this post for previous info). They talked with me about how I'm doing and also we discussed a 'plan' to hopefully get me home soon :)...

Health Update: I have been here for 5 days and this is about when the medications should start to work. I am not feeling any better, really, I am still pretty short of breath, coughing a ton and mostly exhausted because my body is working so hard to fight this infection. I am also, unfortunately, having a lot of digestive problems and my food hasn't exactly been feeling too good in the tummy (enough said). All that is to say, I still have a few weeks ahead of IV meds to kick this infection and get back to my normal stamina, breathing, and living an active life. But, I think I'm starting to see little improvements along the way and being here has really helped me to rest as I allow others to take care of me.

Some Good News: If I start to make some improvements in the next few days and I will do some more tests to make sure my stomach and digestion are all working ok, my doctor is willing to let me go home and continue treatment there, maybe by the end of the week :)...yay! We will see, I will let you all know.

Prayer/Support: For now, I ask for prayers that my body will start to fight the infection with the help of the meds, that I can get lots of rest. Pray that the meds will work hard to kill the bacteria, and that I can have minimal side effects to them. Also, pray the issues with my stomach will get worked out, it's no fun :(.

After seeing my docs today, I feel encouraged that being here to immerse myself in health care for my body is really helping! This hospital and my doctors are incredible, they have done a great job taking care of me and still trying allowing me to live a semi-normal life (going outside, walking, little exercising, eating, resting). I am so encouraged as dear friends and family have surrounded me with love, phone calls (even if I don't return them know you are loved), emails, and prayer...My spirits are up as I know I'm not fighting this battle alone. Both God and people are walking with me in this, I feel so overwhelmed with family of support around me, I cannot thank everyone enough.
Love to all,
~Em granted this isn't the most flattering picture, but I wanted to say hello with my face, not just words on a blog :)

CF Team Rounds, Today

Today is a big day, and hopefully I'll get lots of information about how I'm doing (based on all the blood tests, CT scans, xrays etc...that i've done). This afternoon I will see the entire CF Team as they assess me and look at my progress. My CF Team consists of 2 doctors, a dietician, nutritionist, pharmacist, social worker, respiratory therapist and case manager/center coordinator.

Please pray this afternoon for me, and for them. Pray the docs can have wisdom as to how to treat some of my nagging symptoms of this infection (i'll post about how i'm doing next), and pray for me that I can be open and honest with them and get to know them. This team will be treating me for a long time in the future, so I am glad to get to know them and for them to get to know me as their patient :).
Thanks- i'll update later about how my day goes :)

Monday, August 25, 2008

Today's Joys

Before I go to bed, I wanted to share some of the things I am thankful for today :)

-A great, long nap this morning
-Emails of encouragement from friends
-Good medical care and nurses
-Visits from good friends full of laughter and smiles :)
-Walking around in the sunshine with my dad
-Watching a little Gilmore Girls to end my night

At the end of the day I am reminded that even through times in the hospital, frustration when I can't breathe, and exhaustion from just sitting around, I see that I have so much to be thankful for :). For that, I can't complain- I have an incredible life full of so much I could have never asked for- and though i'm taking a little reprieve from being social and enjoying the things I normally do, while I let my body get back to normal, I am just feeling thankful tonight, of the gifts that God has given me....

Praying for Transplant Patients

One of the cool things about my room here in the hospital, is that it is directly below the helicopter pad. Because this hospital does not have an ER and is mostly a surgical hospital, the helicopters coming in are either patients getting transplants or organs being flown in for a patient to receive...I learn so much from the nurses I get to chat with :).

So just now, at 10am I saw and heard a helicopter coming in and landing above me. I have no idea who or what is in that helicopter, but I feel called to pray for the patients all around the world who are waiting for transplants for any organ, or receiving transplants either at this hospital or anywhere else. What a miracle it is to have a transplant and I can't imagine the emotions involved in both the patient and the donor's family. My prayers and heart are with them all, right now :).

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Getting Used to USC

After spending a night & 2 days on a normal floor here, I am starting to adjust and get used to the ways of's been great :).

I've had excellent care from nurses, and staff, and I feel like they really consider the needs of a CF patient here. I am starting to feel more comfortable, and I am also really glad my doctors are taking the time to get to know me as I'm here- I feel so blessed to have good care.

As I get used to it here, I've noticed a few differences that I enjoy here (not that I didn't have good care at my old hospital, but being here at an adult clinic for CF really makes a big difference). One of the biggest differences here at USC, is that I get freedom to live a more 'normal' life. I am, of course, doing long breathing treatments to clear my lungs, and i'm on 3 antibiotics and a constant IV, but despite that- they give me some freedom to walk around and go outside and enjoy the sunshine as long as CF-contact precautions are taken (meaning I wear a mask and gloves)! I was SO excited to go outside today :). At my previous hospital- they were more strict because they didn't treat CF on a regular basis. There, I was usually confined to my room and was barely given permission to go walk in the hall...

I'm glad that here at USC I don't have to wait 7 days to feel the warmth of the sun :).

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Out of the ICU :) per my last post, I made the move today out of the ICU because my new meds are working great and I've had no negative reactions to them :). I'm now on a med-surg floor with great nurses and great care.

I am glad to be in a place that is much quieter and much more calm- i've had a pretty relaxing day...I was even allowed to go outside and enjoy some fresh air! Yay!

I'll have more to post tomorrow about how i'm doing and how i'm feeling (physically and emotionally), but for now, I'm pretty wiped out after my lack-of-sleep last night and i'm pretty dazed... so i'm headed to sleep :)

Life in the ICU

Good morning :)
I did survive the ICU for the night and things went well...they had me pretty busy with CT scans, blood draws, breathing treatments, x-rays, and then they did a 'de-sensitization' process for the new medication I'm on...which praise the Lord, i'm not allergic! Yay! That was the big hurdle to get over and since I'm not allergic to it and my body took the meds pretty well, I am hoping to be moved to the regular CF floor this morning or afternoon.

I will be glad to move, and hopefully get some quieter sleep...the ICU was not the best place for me to be resting. Glass doors with people looking in on me, machines beeping, people talking, and just being hooked up to all sorts of monitors and machines makes it a little harder to sleep. I did get a little rest here and there, but i'll be glad to be in a more-settled room downstairs... :)

It was an interesting experience, being in the ICU. I spent some time alone, thinking last night, and though it's a new place and a was a little scary for my first night, and it's hard to be in the hospital anyways, I was also feeling very thankful...Thankful for great doctors (that I'm starting to get to know) and nurses who really work hard to take care of me, thankful for good health care, thankful for incredible family and friends who support me and help me not to feel alone at times like this, thankful for being healthy enough to be 25 years old- God is good.

More later, hopefully next time I post i'll be posting from the CF floor...
time to eat my breakfast...(if that's what it is... ;)

Friday, August 22, 2008

I'm checked-in, plugged-in and all set...

I'm all checked-in and plugged-in to so many machines, I couldn't possibly tell you the names of all of them ;)....haha.

So far, it's been a good experience. My first stop is the ICU...Which don't worry, was the original plan. It's a nice floor, big beautiful windows, and great nurses and staff. I've seen my dr, and they have me all set to stay the night here to be monitored closely. I thought i'd be moved to a different floor before evening, but I guess the plan is to keep me here through the night. I'm starting some new meds that they want to test and make sure I don't react adversely to, so i'll be here all night as I go through my first cycle of meds just to make sure all goes well.

It's definitely a new experience for me- I've never been in an ICU (that I can remember) so to be hooked up to all sorts of machines and be watched through a glass door is a little different. But, everyone has been great and knows a ton about CF so I feel i'm in good hands...Now, i'll just be hanging around and waiting for the meds :). I may post more later, but till then- thanks for checking in and for taking these new steps with me through the blog!
Love to all,

Thursday, August 21, 2008


Just a little update, i'm still waiting to get admitted to the hospital. Apparently USC is pretty full and no beds are available on the unit I need to be in...If I don't get in by 5 today, i'll be admitted first thing in the morning. So, i'll keep waiting and i'll keep the blog posted.
As of now, i've had Gilmore Girls season 7 and my fabulous mom to keep me company :)


Dr's Visit Results?

As per 2 posts ago, I was headed to the dr. to get a check-up for an infection i've been battling in my lungs. I went in on Monday and it looks like it's definitely time to get things taken care of, so today I am being admitted to the hospital for IV treatment and some tests. This is pretty normal for me (I do IVs about 3-4 times a year), so I'll be getting this process started and then hopefully I can go home within the week to do the rest of my treatment from home. I'm hoping this will be a routine "tune-up" and clean-out that infection asap so I can be on my merry way in a few weeks :)

One of the reasons I started this blog, was to keep my friends and family updated on life with CF- the good, the bad and the ugly...haha. So feel free to check-in with my blog for updates and maybe some interesting stories from my new hospital (USC University Hospital) as I'm no longer at CHOC (I grew up :). You never know what kind of stories can come out of hospitals!

As always, thanks for the support, friends...if it ever gets too boring, I'm never offended if you don't check-in. I am always so grateful for the love and support in times like this (and always). So thank you for caring for me as you do.
Love to you all,

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

1 Month Ago Today...

Pipeline to a Cure was happening! I can't believe it's already been a month since the event...I thought I would post some pictures and also share a little bit deeper about how this event and being involved with the Cystic Fibrosis has been a life-changing event. Even 1 month later, I am still amazed at all that happened and still processing it all, but i'd like to share here a few thoughts...

As I look back on the night of the gala, I am just stunned by the amount of people that were there to hear about CF, the amount of people working hard to put that event on, and then the amount of people who talked with me after I spoke. I talked with many people, and I heard throughout the night of the impact i've made on people, I had no idea and was just stunned by what people said. I've never felt like public speaking was something that I wanted to do...until now, I see that God has placed that ability in me and I see how I can be used for His glory and for good.

For years, I've wondered "What is the purpose in my having CF?" I've read bible passages like Jeremiah 29:11 and Romans 8:28 and i've wondered- how can God use something like CF which is a terrible disease, for something good in His plans, when CF has already altered many of my dreams and plans? Whether you are a Christian or not, most people have wondered "What is my purpose, what am I here for?"

For the first time, at Pipeline, my eyes were opened and I was humbled to see God using CF for good. I felt like my life had a purpose, and I was blown away by that. First, my life and story were used to bring awareness about CF and raise research money. But more than that, my life was used for God's glory as it was obvious to me- I can't do this without God and my prayer was that it would be God who was seen through my heart. Secondly, I felt it to be an incredible honor and responsibility to be an adult with CF, sharing my life and story. I know that the money and awareness raised that night was not just for me- but for the 70,000 other CF patients worldwide. I feel incredibly purposeful knowing that my being alive and 25 can be used to not only bring God the glory, but bring encouragement and hopefully research that many around the globe will benefit from...

Lastly, I realized, if I could work with CF and do my part by using the gifts that God has shown me, to help raise awareness and hopefully bring about a cure through research, then I want to do this the rest of my life or until a cure is found :). I've never thought that working with CF in my life would be something I love- for years i've been shy, I didn't want CF seen in my life and I've been scared to share this disease with others. However, now, I've seen that God can use me, and feel comfortable with my life with CF, I hope to continue doing this. I loved being there, being an 'ambassador' on behalf of the CF Community and I feel a sense of purpose and joy as I'm doing what God has put in me. I have a passion for the CF community, and God has shown me that this is something I am made to do for me and for others with CF...My prayer is that God will continue to use me, and show me how I can use my life with CF for his good. I can't wait for next year, and for all God is developing in me and through me in this campaign to raise money for CF. I am honored to be a part of it :)

Here's to a cure for CF, and for Pipeline to a Cure 2009!!

Fun pics from the night:

Monday, August 18, 2008

Dr.'s Visit Today

If you think of it today, please pray for me. I'll be visiting the dr. today at USC for a few reasons. I haven't been feeling well and have been very congested for the last few weeks- I had thought it was from traveling and being tired, but it hasn't seemed to go away...Also, I am in need of some new enzymes to digest my food.
So, if you think of it, I'll be going this afternoon- I'd love your prayers for me and for the doctors. That together we can make good decisions for my health.

Its been tough knowing that I need to go to the doctor after such an amazing summer. It's almost like I don't want it to end, i've been so excited to be involved in the CF community, involved in Pipeline to a cure, and surfing a ton. Even though when I am doing all those things, CF is directly in my face because i'm talking about it and being an ambassador for the CF community, it became so surreal that it's easy for me to keep going and think everything is ok...I've taken great care of myself this summer but, the reality of CF is, no matter how much I take care of myself, my body does not always cooperate. So, I am finally taking the step to be looked at by my doctors today and hopefully my lungs are not too bad and there are some good antibiotic solutions!

Thanks for the prayers, I appreciate it- friends!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Summer Pics

Since it's a hot day outside, I thought it would be a great afternoon to enjoy the AC in my house and post some pics from this summer :). I've been slacking on my picture posting, so today is a good day to catch up!
The first set, are some pictures from a Surf Day for Cystic Fibrosis, hosted by Quiksilver...and the second set are some pics from my wonderful family vacation in Ocracoke, NC...
Enjoy :)

Talking with Strider, a long-time Quiksilver rider...
Sporting the Quiksilver gear...
Getting the CF kids ready to get in the water, thanks Robbie for your hard work!

The family around the dinner table...yum, looks like another great meal :)
Mariel and I on the ferry ride to Ocracoke Island...

Kim, Mariel and I enjoying a day out on the beach...

Happy 30th Anniversary, Mom and Dad!

August 13th is my parent's 30th Wedding Anniversary! So they are celebrating 30 years this week- wow! (I know i'm a few days late in posting)...

They have had 30 wonderful years together, and I wish them another wonderful 30. They have been incredible parents- full of love, support and encouragement for my sister and I and have worked hard to have good careers and raise our family well at the same time. I only hope that someday, I will be as blessed as they are to celebrate 30 years with someone in my life. I love my parents and I wish them an incredible next 30 years :).
I love you, Mom and Dad!


This is a picture of us at Lucille's BBQ, celebrating as I finally paid off my college loans! Thank you Mom and Dad for always being supportive in everything I do :)

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Olympic Fever!

Is anyone else just LOVING the Olympics this year? I know I am! I usually crash by 11pm but since the Olympics have been on, i've found myself staying up till I just can't keep my eyes open! Gymnastics, swimming, diving, even beach volleyball (which i've never really watched)'s addicting...haha.

Anyone else doing the same? :)


Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Thank you, Volcom!

Last Saturday, the Mauli-Ola Foundation put on a Surf Experience Day for Cystic Fibrosis! Mauli-Ola is a great organization, it means "Breath of Life" in Hawaiian, and their goal is to raise awareness for CF and help get the surf industry to partner in teachingkids how to surf. They do so in a very safe way so kids don't have contact and CF contact rules are adhered...and the kids have a BLAST!

Last Saturday, they partnered with Volcom, and Newport Surf Camp and held a morning for kids with CF to learn to surf! It was a BLAST!! Volcom brought a ton of shirts and gear for the kids, and brought about 10 of their team riders to help teach the kids- it was super fun!

Check out the video and pics they posted on their website!!
Thank you, Mauli-Ola, Newport Surf Camp and Volcom!!

Friday, August 8, 2008

Book Reccomendation

While on vacation the last two weeks, I had picked up a book called "The Power of Two; A Twin Triumph over Cystic Fibrosis" written by 2 fellow CFers that I knew many years ago. They are twins, living with CF, and I knew them as a child when we all used to go to CF Camp together! We've since lost touch, however just this year they published a memoir of their lives, growing up with CF as kids and now adults!

They are incredible women and have been through a ton. Their book is very inetense, leaves nothing out, and is really accurate (I think) to what life with CF is like. They are very real in describing what many CFers really experience emotionally, physically, mentally etc...I was inspired by all they have gone through, was given tons of hope and joy in reading it and learned a lot about lung transplants as well. I felt like this book very accurately portrayed many of my life experiences as well, and throughout reading it I found myself saying "I've felt that too"...

Anyways, if you are looking for a great book that describes the medical aspect of CF, AND what life is really like- I highly recommend it...Be ready for an awesome story by two awesome girls with a huge excitement for life, may God continue to bless them and keep them healthy.
This is the link to the book, written by Isabel and Ana Stenzel.


Thursday, August 7, 2008

Post Pipeline Press

Since the event, we have continued to see some press come out!
Its been pretty awesome to see it all happen...and see CF really get some awareness :)

Check out this link to see a web-video that the local orange county newspaper (OC Register) made- it has clips from that nights event:

Next is an article that ran in the OC Register about Pipeline, on July 19th (I couldn't figure out the link, so I copied it below)...

Cystic fibrosis patients find relief in the sea
Surfing event today in Huntington will put participants in what’s been found to be a natural aid: salt water.


Through surfing, doctors in Australia have discovered one of the most effective treatments available to cystic-fibrosis patients – salt water.
“It’s not a cure, but it is the most effective therapy that CF sufferers have ever had,” said Paul Motenko from the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
Cystic fibrosis, a genetically inherited disease, affects organs in the human body by interrupting the ability to carry salt and water to and from cells. This causes a buildup of mucus, eventually creating scar tissue that damages organs and limits sufferers’ ability to breathe.
Doctors observed that patients with the disease who surfed were healthier than those who did not. Clinical studies, completed with support from the foundation, proved that surfing indeed helped patients. Saltwater treatments are now regularly given to patients around the world.
Surfing legend and Dana Point local Mickey Muñoz found out about the breakthrough and felt inspired to help.
“Surfing is the fountain of youth. I built a lot of boats and boards in my days and inhaled a lot of toxic fumes, so I could empathize on that level,” Muñoz said.
The foundation introduced Muñoz to cystic fibrosis patient Emily Haager, 24, of Diamond Bar. The disease lessens Haager’s ability to breathe, leaving her with only 65 percent of typical lung capacity compared with other adults her age. She has been surfing regularly for about a year and was very excited to get the chance to surf with Muñoz.
“When I’m in the water my lungs clear out, I breathe a lot deeper and I feel great afterwards,” Haager said. “Mickey has years of knowledge and wisdom. I love hearing about his surfing adventures.”
Muñoz and surfers Laird Hamilton, Jericho Poppler and Dave Kalama are all backing the foundation’s inaugural Pipeline to a Cure fundraiser being held today at the Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach.
“This is the first time that participation in a sport has been found to be beneficial to a fatal genetic disease. Once surfers understood the sport they loved – along with its healing and spiritual elements – also helped to relieve CF, they rallied behind us like you wouldn’t believe,” Motenko said.
The foundation’s event is raising money to aid in the funding of research, treatment and an eventual cure.
“This seems like such a natural cause for surfers to get behind,” Muñoz said.

About cystic fibrosis

Every year, 1,000 new cases are diagnosed. In 2006, the median life span for sufferers was 37. It clogs lungs and leads to lung infections. It stops enzymes from helping the body digest correctly. Source: Cystic Fibrosis Foundation

Pipeline to a Cure

What: Inaugural fundraiser sponsored by the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and PacSun When: 6 p.m. today Where: Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach Events: Silent auction, dinner, dancing, live auction and an acoustic performance by Social Distortion
Tickets and information:
9 1 9-492-5 1 35 or

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

The Beginning of "Pipeline"

I've been blogging a lot about Pipeline to a Cure, a big fundraising event and campaign to connect the surfing community and Cystic Fibrosis with a goal to raise money and awareness to find a cure for Cystic Fibrosis.

Now that our innaugural event is over, a few weeks ago (July 19th), I thought I'd blog the whole story now that I have some time...A lot of people have asked me, how did I get involved with this campaign? How did it all get started?'s the beginning story...

I began surfing after a long bout in the hospital in 2006. I was in the hospital when, my doctors asked me to try a new treatment that had been released called "Hypertonic Saline", a very intense concentrated dose of salt-water, created to mimic the ocean. This was created because they had found surfers with CF, in Australia, were significantly higher in their lung function due to the salt water hydrating the lungs (see this article for more information).

So, I tried the treatment, and began using it because it helped me to cough out mucus easier, and so I then began surfing a few months after my hospital stay...I've been hooked ever since :).

As surfing (and Hypertonic saline) became more of my routine, the CF Foundation office in Southern California and other individuals involved in the surf community and with CF began dreaming up the idea to get the two worlds connected-- after all, surfers spend 90% of their time in the salt water that is hydrating CF lungs! So, Pipeline to a Cure was born and the date was set!
All they needed, was a person to help connect and share a story with the surfing community to help them understand CF...that's where I came in :).

See this Youtube Video to see the beginning of my involvement (thanks to Jordan, and Casey for their amazing work in this video coming together, and helping me to get out of my box to do it!)... As I did this video, it all snowballed from there, and God began to grow me as I became more involved and began to realize God's call for me to share my heart and my story with the surf community and CF community...This is the first step of faith for me, and I then saw God opening doors and challenging me to use my life with CF for Him...

Emily's Story on Youtube


Monday, August 4, 2008

Glad to be home :)

I finally made it back home, to the earthquake-shaken california :).

After 2 weeks away, and over 24 hours of traveling to get home (American Airlines is not my friend), I finally arrived home this morning and am SO glad to be here!

Being away was awesome- I had some great time to really reflect on life, be with God, and spend some very quality time with my family from all over the US. However, I wasn't feeling too great physically and our bummer-trip home with cancelled flights and staying the night in Dallas, TX was not the best for me. I'm gonna need some good recoup time just from my vacation, haha. I ask for your prayers for my body- I'm tired, and my breathing hasn't been the best the last week or so...thanks.

Anyways, good to be home. I look forward to posting more stories of my vacation, pics, and many more stories and pics from the Pipeline to a Cure event that happened 2 weeks ago. God is really changing me, and I believe, leading me to use my life even more for Him. I look forward to sharing on this blog, all that God is doing and sharing all the fun that's happened in the last few weeks!
More later :)

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Real Thunderstorms!!

That's right, one of my favorite things when visiting on the East Coast is the awesome house-shaking thunderstorms that happen :).

We had a big one, Thursday night- major thunder, power outages, and some pretty cool lightning that lit up the room when it cracked across the sky!

I got a few pics before the rain came pouring down...this just doesn't happen very often in Cali, so I gotta take it all in while I can!!
What did Elisabeth and I do to weather the storm? Hunker down with a laptop and a chick flick while we watched the lightning across the sky :). Good times!