I am grateful for the gift of sight and for individuals making the decision to donate life. My vision has been corrected with glasses since the age of 5. While a senior in nursing school I began to have headaches and a decrease in visual acuity that could that required special lenses in my glasses to correct my vision. My optometrist diagnosed me with Keratoconus, a disease that causes the cornea to become cone-shaped. After graduating from nursing school and 2 years into my career I began to have problems reading normal handwriting, increase in headaches and problems while driving.
My doctor referred me to an ophthalmologist who informed me I had to be placed on a waiting list for a cornea. Thankfully that wait was short lived. In less than a week and the day before Thanksgiving I received my first cornea. An officer that was killed in the line of duty was a donor and a year younger than myself. I will never be able to thank his family enough for honoring his wishes. Five years later I had to receive my second transplant due the disease progression in my non-transplanted cornea. I was able to schedule surgery due to the increase in the number of donors. This all began 23 years ago and my corneas are great and my vision is corrected with glasses. Without the “gift” from donors I would not have been able to fulfill by life time dream of being a nurse. Thanks to all the donors and for their families making sure their wishes are fulfilled.