Photo Contest

Kelly Krzyzak

Photo Description

My Magnolia Mae sporting her blue and green Donate Life t-shirt for heart momma who’s a heart transplant recipient!❤️💙💚

My Story

On February 15, 2015 I was at the pre k after hours cutting hearts for the children to decorate for Valentine’s Day. I just wasn’t feeling right. My co worker and myself went home with hopes of finishing the next evening. When I go home I say down on the couch and started to have chest pains, pain down my left arm and started to vomit. Right away my husband called 911. The ambulance took me to our local hospital. They confirmed I had a heart attack. I was brought to the cardiac catheterization lab for a cath to see how much damage it did to my heart and I went into cardiac arrest. The doctor said he and the team had to paddle my heart upwards of 50 times to get it to beat. They inserted the impeller heart pump, stabilized me and air lifted me to a trauma 1 hospital where I woke up 12 days later with an LVAD. I was in the hospital for 3 months and then rehab for 2 weeks. I was able to go home with my LVAD and 10 months after I returned home my donor was ready to give me the greatest gift I will ever receive. My beautiful new heart. On March 12, 2016 I received my gift. I am so grateful for my donor hero as I was able to see my daughter graduate from college right after I was released from the hospital and my son graduate from high school and subsequently college. I am able to spend time with my husband, mom and friends. I am also able to volunteer for LiveOnNY, Donate Life NYS , the CDT and the American heart assoc. None of this would be possible without my donor. ❤️💙💚