Wednesday, February 14, 2018


"I'm literally giving you my heart this Valentine's Day" I say to Ric as I show him the Dixie cup slowly filling up with my blood; hemoptysis. I wish I was that witty, in a moment like that. Truth is, whenever I see the bright rouge color the world pauses. Anytime, you see that in Hollywood - it's the foreshadowing of the death of the character. I know in that moment I'm not dying, it's not the first time this has happened to me and it's not "uncommon" in Cystic Fibrosis. Our lungs are consistently deteriorating. But I also understand, I wouldn't be the first person to die from a bleed.

The same rush of emotions you'd expect if that happened to you; occur in my body. In my brain. Panic, fear, shock, doom.  I still feel them, no matter how many times it' been. 

"Okay...'bring yourself back to reality...I am here. I am breathing. I am alive. My family is here. We are safe. I know what to do....
  • Stop, whatever I was doing to aggravate it. I simply sat down on the couch tho, hhmm?
  • Tell someone. Go in and communicate to Ric how I'm feeling, how much has come up, and continue monitoring the amount. (If it reaches one ounce, immediate hospital attention is required.)
  • Make a quick mental note of everything you'd need to pack for your son and a few trusted friends who wouldn't mind you interrupting their nights sleep to take your son. Lindsay...Jodi...
  • Text a CF buddy, mentor and/or peer for any other suggestions or advice.
    •  Really this text, it's for moral support - I need to talk to somebody who's been through this. Who knows how I'm feeling mentally, emotionally and physically. Somebody to comfort me, help me get through this moment.
  • Ice water. Emilee just suggested this tonight, start drinking to help induce vasoconstriction.....Got it.

I climb in bed next to Ric. I want to be by him. Dixie cup in my hand. Pillows propped behind my back, I'm sitting up. I need to be. Every cough brings only frank bloo, no phlegm. I felt "the bubble"* in my mid back. I know where the bleed is coming from. I can feel the irritation. I begin praying.

I wake up the next morning. I'm alive, the bleeding stopped at some point in the night, I'm not sure when, but it did.

The cup is still in my hand, I rise, walk to the trash, toss it in and move on with the start of a fresh new day.

Xx, M 

* 'the bubble' is the term my CF friends and I use to describe the feeling when the bleed begins. Honestly, I don't know if it's the physical feeling of a blood vessel bursting, or what. The only thing I can say, if you've felt it, then you know "bubble" is the perfect way to describe it. 

Oh,'s the link to the wreath I promised to post: