Club CF 40+

People with CF who are LIVING, BREATHING and SUCCEEDING at 40+ may be very stable in their career. They may be getting promoted or slowing down a little to take care of their health. As therapies increase, striking a balance between treatments and work is important so they can enjoy life!

Family life and their children’s education are important, as is maintaining their health through compliance and exercise. They also may be preparing for a double-lung transplant so they can start a new life post-transplant.

If you are one of the many people LIVING, BREATHING and SUCCEEDING with CF, we want to hear from you! Show the world what you have done!
Click here to submit your story. All applicants will receive a CLUB CF t-shirt.

May 21 2009

Joan Finnegan Brooks

"I have never viewed CF as a burden."
 
I am 49 years old, and I grew up in Sleepy Hollow, N.Y.  Born with CF in 1960, I was given less than 10 years to live.  My mother and father instilled independence and responsibility in me at a young age, and I learned to do all of my therapies and take care of myself by the time I reached high school.  I have never viewed CF as a burden; it is something that is built into my every day routine.
 
Exercise is one of the most important factors in my life and staying healthy with CF.  I discovered the wonders of exercise in high school while playing field hockey.  As a result of all the running on the field, my lungs would clear and I could breathe easier.  Since then, I have run – I’ve completed a marathon and several half-marathons.  I also enjoy dancing and cycling.
 
I attended Brown University and graduated with a degree in economics.  I live in the Boston area with my husband of 20 years. I work full-time, managing my own consulting practice.  I also volunteer for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, as giving back to the community is very important to me.  For 49 years, I have successfully managed CF and remained optimistic the entire time.  I intend to possess that attitude well into the future.
 
Favorite Holiday: Christmas        
Favorite Food: Mashed potatoes
Favorite Pastime: Sudoku
Favorite Movie: It’s a Wonderful Life
Favorite Color: Green
Dream Vacation: Italy
You can find Joan on … Facebook
March 02 2009

Paul Drury

“Live in the now.”
 

Born in Chesire, Connecticut with five older brothers and sisters, I was diagnosed with CF at the age of two. Growing up, I had a normal, active childhood with the “usual” cleanouts – playing sports like baseball, golf, and hockey in high school. When I started at the University of Connecticut in the late 80s, I found adjusting to college life extremely difficult. I was very private about having cystic fibrosis, avoiding telling my friends so that I would not be treated differently.

During my first semester of school, I got pneumonia. During my second semester, my lung collapsed three times, so my doctors glued my lung to the inside of my chest in an attempt to prevent future issues. However; that did not work and I eventually had to withdraw from school for an entire year.

Living at home with my parents in 1986, I focused on getting healthy again and started going to the gym every day. Although it was a struggle, spending the year at home turned out to be a blessing in disguise. In November, my dad passed away from a heart attack. Spending that spring and fall at home with him – watching the Red Sox go to the World Series – provided me with memories that I still cherish.

Eventually I graduated from UConn with a degree in economics, after which my lung health deteriorated. In 1993, I ended up on oxygen for a full year and was told a transplant was out of the question. Eventually, I could be put on the list with a two-year wait. My condition worsened, and I moved up the list at Loyola University in Chicago; and in 1995, I became the first person to ever be transplanted from a respirator. I recovered remarkably.

Following my double lung transplant, I started a marathon golf event as a volunteer for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. In 1996, I became a full-time staff member and have since become the Director of Special Projects and the Executive Director of the CT Chapter. Even after a kidney transplant in April 2004, I am still working to raise awareness for both CF patients and organ donors. Now, at the age of 43, I have learned that living with CF has given me a unique perspective on life – one that has taught me to live in the moment and never lose hope. I currently live in Plantsville, CT with my wife and two dogs – taking one day at a time and always maintaining a positive outlook on life.

February 17 2009

Jennifer Davison

“CF is a part of who I am but it does not define me”
 
I am 40 years old and have Cystic Fibrosis.  I am the youngest of nine children, three of whom had CF. Growing up in a big family, there was no time to feel sorry for one single person, so I was treated like everyone else.  Which in retrospect I believe helped build my strength and character.  I have always been very independent and a hard worker.
 
After High School, I attended the Fashion Institute of Technology in Manhattan.  I received a degree in Textiles Development and Marketing and worked for a short time in the Fashion Industry.  I quickly realized my true desire was to help people, and returned to school to become a Registered Nurse.  I was able to maintain a career in Nursing for over 10 years, working in the Pediatric ICU and the Recovery Room, before I had to stop working.  The decision to stop working, although very difficult, was the right choice for me.
 
Family has always been very important to me.  I met my husband at a very young age and the decision to marry was an easy one.  The decision to start a family was obviously much more difficult.  We decided that if Tim was a carrier, we would not have any children.  But, he is not, so we went for it.  Luckily at the time I was healthy enough to sustain a pregnancy for nine months and she was born without any complications and is now a healthy 11 year old girl!  Having my daughter, Dara, was for me, the best decision  I ever made, she has brought so much joy to our lives!
 
I recommend to all people with CF to get out there and live your life without putting any restrictions on yourself.  Being active is the key to a good quality of life.  I have always enjoyed skiing, swimming, riding my bike, whatever will take me outdoors and allow me to feel alive!!  Just because you have CF doesn’t mean you have to stop living your life.  I have always felt that I was going to do what everyone else does; I just have to work a little harder at it!!

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