Learn how Rachel Kinney fits studying for a computer science major, an active social calendar and daily cystic fibrosis treatments into her life.
Our next “Living Today” video features Jordan Scott, 22, whose biggest challenge involves gaining weight. But through her love of studying nutrition, she's been able to overcome her fear of the inevitable: a feeding tube.
When I decided to study abroad in 1974, I also decided that I would not allow CF to stop me from living my life to the fullest.
My oldest son, Nathan, was 18 years old when he was finally diagnosed with cystic fibrosis. While we both had been waiting a long time to get an answer to what had been plaguing him, I'd been hoping and praying that he'd escape the CF sentence. The diagnosis, however, did not come as a surprise because exactly 35 days earlier, my younger son, Caleb, at 14 years, had already been diagnosed with CF.
Finding a Balance Between CF and High School
When I was 13, my family went from having two seemingly normal kids to two CF patients in a manner of a few short months -- and boy, did it change everything. Because of my late diagnosis, I faced a unique set of challenges that helped make me the strong person I am today.
Growing up, I never had any doubts that I would one day go off to college and pursue a career, despite having cystic fibrosis. But when the time came to prepare to attend Marquette University and live on my own in Milwaukee, I knew I would need a plan in order to make my transition to college life as smooth as possible.
As a teacher with cystic fibrosis, I find it no surprise that heading back to school can be a shock to my system. But over the years, I've learned that if I can remember three main things, I can stay healthy through the transition back to school.
During my five months in Denmark for a study abroad program, I not only learned more about myself and others, but I became more confident in my ability to take care of myself. Don't let CF stand in the way of experiencing that, or any other dreams.
Cystic fibrosis can't take living away, especially when one loves life!