I'm young. 18 years old to be exact, but my heart and mind say otherwise.
At a younger age I was never able to understand most things that were brought upon my life. I was constantly facing new struggles that kids I was surrounded by weren’t dealing with and may never have to. I grew up surrounded by medical terms, doctors, and hospitalizations. I became familiar with medication lists so long that they consumed 3 full pages.
My whole life I have been raised through challenges, broken dreams, and learning to adapt to new lifestyles time and time again. As I began to get older and wiser I learned to accept my fate in life, I learned to face difficulties with nothing but a positive outlook, and I learned that there is no way to change your past, but there are ways to make your present and future worthwhile.
There have been times where I was not able to keep my vigorous frame of mind. In these moments I would feel myself slowly drowning in sorrow, defeat, but most of all, guilt. I felt guilty because, even though I may not have been in the best situation, I was far better off than some people in this world. These are the moments that have helped define who I am. People will hear my infectious laugh during my most difficult intervals, I will have an everlasting smile on my face when all I want to do is break down, and no matter what is going on in my life, I am always putting forth the effort into making others happy.
For me to be able to say that I am satisfied with myself, life, and all of its entities is a wondrous feeling and gift. Every day I fight the odds and live with a mad, passionate determination, which no matter what, will never be destroyed.
I’m young. 18 years old to be exact, but my heart and mind say otherwise.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Lauren Czerwonka

This is a post written by the beautiful Lauren Czerwonka
This proves how much we mean to each other. 
We're not just cysters. We're sisters. 

 Alexandria is my best friend in the whole world! We both have CF and she has been my inspiration for 5 and a half years. We met on youtube and after a couple awkward video chats, we pretty much know each other's families and friends :) We have had a few sleepovers and we had our most recent one last night! We video chatted for almost 17 hours straight! That was our first video chat in 4 months! We haven't been keeping in touch very well for the past couple of months because of how busy we both are. It's my senior year of high school and she is a freshman in college, but she also is very busy with the hospital visits and keeping up with her treatments and healthcare. No one will ever know me the way she does, or will be able to make me as happy as she makes me. I owe a lot to her and I try to support her as much as I possibly can because that's what best friends do. I hope that one day we will be able to meet each other in real life once we are either cured or she gets her double lung transplant. She fights so incredibly hard to just take a breathe everyday and if I could, I would take her place in a heart beat. It has been extremely hard for me to watch her deteriorate over the past 5 years and I know what will inevitably happen sooner or later. I know that she is strong enough to hold on long enough until she is at the top of the transplant list. I only wish the best for her. I have to be positive because I know that God has her in his arms. He will do what he has to do and I trust his choice. Alex was placed on this Earth for a very important reason. That reason is to inspire everyone she meets or even sees on the street to be a better person and to be grateful for the life they live and especially the air they BREATHE.  Breathing is something that too many people take for granted in this world and it is her duty to spread awareness of Cystic Fibrosis. People are dying everyday from it, so they only thing we can do now is keep our heads up and wait until it is our turn to leave this Earth and go to God, or to hopefully beat this disease and live to inspire others to as well. Alexandria is my best friend in the whole world, and I will never let her go. I don't know what I would do without her. 

Alex, I am so proud of you for making it this far.
I love you.

You and me together,
Always and forever,
Nothing can tear us apart,
You'll always be in my heart.

This is an essay I wrote about her.

2, 296 miles is approximately 33 hours away from me, driving time at least. 33 hours? Ha, that won’t stop me. Bothell, Washington is where I plan to go and Lauren Czerwonka is the reason I plan to go there. What started off as a simple YouTube comment sprouted into much more than I imagined. Continuous messages were sent back and forth and a friendship that is unbreakable began to form. After several awkward video conversations we soon became comfortable around each other and became a support system for one another. We became best friends who not only shared the same disease, but also interests, outlooks, and everything down to our favorite food. 

I’m not interested in all of the “must-see” sights of the world such as, The Statue Of Liberty or the White House. Yes, that would be such an adventure as well, but I have more important things to check off of my bucket list. I can’t say that this trip will happen anytime soon, but I am planning on making it happen as soon as possible after I receive my double lung transplant. Cystic Fibrosis patients are not allowed to be in contact with each other due to the infections that harbor in our lungs, which can be transferred from one another through cross contamination. With my new, healthy, and infection free lungs, I will have nothing to pass over to Lauren. Luckily, she only cultures one infection. I also have the same one, but I have a few others that she doesn’t have. I imagine that this would take place over the summer since we will both be out of school for the time being. I would love it if I were able to stay at least a month. I know Lauren’s family would welcome me with open arms beings how we have talked with them about this happening someday, so finding a place to stay wouldn’t be any issue.  

Will I fly or will I drive? I’m not too positive on that either. Flying will probably be my choice even though I do love long road trips. An estimate of around $600 is how much it would cost, there and back. I currently have well over a couple thousand dollars in my savings account that continues to grow, so I know I will be okay in that department. When it comes to family and your best friends, money doesn’t really seem to be an issue though. I will use however much is needed and it will not be regretted. We are able to use Skype, texting, and picture messaging to communicate, but that just isn’t the same as being in someone’s actual presence. No, it’s not at all. 

Between the roughly 5 ½ years that I have known Lauren, I honestly couldn’t begin to tell you how many times she has helped me through my difficult moments. Unlike me, Lauren’s health is substantial. Her lung functions run around 115%, while mine are 40% on a good day. She is involved in sports all year round, while for me, just walking through the store can be difficult at times.  She has seen me at my absolute worst and has witnessed my not so good days. Most importantly, she has continued to stick around despite witnessing her best friend rapidly decline. Lauren has given me someone who I can talk to when I become scared and feel lost. Just recently we had a conversation that proves my point.
After contemplating for a while on asking Lauren I finally sent her a message saying, “Would you rather have me be completely honest with everything that’s going on or just go over the basics? 
“I’d rather know everything please. As hard as it may be (Czerwonka).”
“I figured. I was just worried because there have been people that decided to just not know anything and left suddenly because they said it was too hard.”
“I love you so much and want to go through this with you. I’ll always be by your side. Can you believe we’ve known each other for 5 years already? We’ve grown up so much and you’ve taught me so many things (Czerwonka).

This is the Lauren I have grown to love even though we may have never met in person. This is the Lauren that I will someday meet, face-to-face. We will be able to hug each other and laugh and cry and talk about everything and nothing. The day I meet Lauren in person will be a day never forgotten. I will cry an enormous amount of tears of joy while not having enough words to say. I will make this trip happen. Just like a saying we both came up with together, it will be, “Me and you together, always and forever. Nothing can tear us apart. You’ll always be in my heart.”

This was after one of our "sleepovers" where we stay on Skype and fall asleep and wake up together :)

1 comment:

  1. Awwww I love you so much! I'm glad you saw my post :) We are amazing together! Cysters and SISTERS for life CF doesn't define our friendship! Our friendship goes beyond Cystic Fibrosis!