There are approximately 30,000 Americans living with cystic fibrosis. They are moms, dads, sisters, brothers, daughters, sons, friends, and co-workers who struggle every day just to breathe. We walk for them. Will you join us? To become a member of our team, just click on the "Join our Team" button. From there, you can make a donation and start fundraising.
By joining our team and making a donation, you are joining a growing group of people committed to finding a cure for cystic fibrosis. We will not rest until all those with cystic fibrosis have a cure. The time is now. Together, we can conquer this disease.
Here is Patrick's Story:
A New Chapter.
For those who have known me, I am sure they would characterize me as ultra competitive, always down for a game / sport, and a very active person. I would have added extremely good looking and taller than average but that is just me. I have always been a person who wants to help whether it is my friends or others in need, but I have never found a true calling for where that help is best fit.
That all changed this year! As many of you know, Scarlett and I are pregnant and expecting the love of our life in September 2019 and we could not be more happy but this was no easy process. Scarlett and I struggled greatly to get pregnant. Over 1.5 years of trying followed by numerous tests (as anyone who has gone through this knows very well) something was revealed that Scarlett and I were in no way ready for. Something we struggled to accept and are still working to wrap our heads around. Upon the completion of both of our blood tests the results were in and they shattered our world. I was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis at 30 years old. I know what you are thinking, this is not possible and that is exactly what was going through our minds. In case you do not know, Cystic Fibrosis is a condition in which chloride, a component of salt, is blocked from moving to a cells surface ultimately creating the condition of thickening mucus resulting in breathing issues, digestive problems, nutrient deficiencies, reproductive complications, and ultimately premature lung failure. There is no cure for Cystic Fibrosis and the average life expectancy is in the early 30's. But how is that possible is the next question. I grew up playing every sport there was, never had major breathing issues, and never made it to the point of any level of testing. Well what I have is a rare genetic mutation that dampens the symptoms and with only 40 cases known in the US truly carries an unknown outlook.
Overall, the doctors and nurses at Emory Adult Cystic Fibrosis unit have been nothing short of amazing. Dr. William Hunt and his team have helped me work through this diagnosis and transition into the life of breathing treatments, increased sensitivity to illness, and ultimately the unknown. At first this was devastating, but every time I visit the clinic for a regular quarterly clinical, I am reminded how lucky I truly am. One slight mutation away from having the same intense challenge that affects the nearly 70,000 other CF patients in the world. And that is what I am writing for today. Not for sympathy for me but for the hope that I can inspire you to take 5 minutes to donate to help cure an illness that impacts so many to a level none of us can understand.
We take a lot of things for granted in this amazing life we have been given, but none more than our health. Every day you wake up and breathe normally understand there are thousands out there that are not that lucky. Help us the find a cure to this invasive disease that changes the most routine of all things you do in life, breathing. I have found meaning, not in my diagnosis, but in the strength I have seen in the young children and young adults who have been faced with this challenge from day one. The strength they have shown in not making excuses but living life to the fullest for as long as they can. Now it is our turn to show them strength. Now it is our turn to believe. Now it is our turn to CURE Cystic Fibrosis. Join my team and my mission, follow the mantra, and do not stop until CF stands for Cure Found!
Great Strides is a fun event that provides a fantastic opportunity for family, friends, students, and colleagues to come together to make a difference in the lives of people with CF -- join our team today!
Important note on Attendance at Foundation Events:
Infections can exacerbate CF symptoms and worsen lung function, so we ask attendees at Foundation-sponsored events to observe the following best practices to reduce the risk of germ transmission:
Regularly wash hands with soap and water or with an alcohol-based hand gel.
Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or your inner elbow.
Maintain a safe 6-foot distance from anyone with a cold or infection.
To further reduce the risk of cross-infection, the Foundation’s attendance policy recommends that all people with CF maintain a safe 6-foot distance from each other at all times while attending an outdoor Foundation-sponsored event. All Great Strides walks are non-smoking events.