Miracle on Eldorado Drive!

Posted by on Dec 28, 2016 in About me, Gratitude | 85 comments

Hello all,

A miracle happened today, I just do not know what else to call it.

A year ago I was diagnosed with progressive lung disease. I have since had four surgeries, 79 tests and countless days in the hospital. It has been monumentally challenging and depressing, and I felt like I was not safe talking about it, since the year before I paid a great price for my honesty about my heart issue.

So, I have been going to therapy and sharing with very few people. My prognosis has been uncertain, but every single time I had a cat scan the disease had grown. No meds, despite the horrendous side effects, did anything to slow it. It shows up as white opaque areas on the lungs, which should be black. My “white” areas grew and grew. I had to finally realize I was in for an awful life that would eventually kill me. 

The hospital I go to is the best pulmonary hospital in the country. They said I had the rarest disease, with the most rare case of that disease they had ever seen. This is not news anyone wants to hear. They did not know what to do with me, and were conferring with a team all across the country. 

Then I get a certified letter saying the equipment used in my heart surgery was contaminated during my surgery, with micro bacteria that could cause lung disease. More tests. A call to the Mayo Clinic for a second opinion. The Mayo Clinic refused to see me since that letter was cause to believe there could be a lawsuit. I never mentioned suing anyone, I just wanted a second opinion and they are the only place dealing with rare diseases like mine. They said resoundingly “absolutely not”. I cried and begged, not believing a hospital like this could say this to me. They did not back down.

National Jewish, my hospital, decided to try an experimental drug on me called Cellcept. The side effects took two pages to explain, in very small type. The drug lowers your immune system so I cannot be around sick people, shave my legs (due to excessive bleeding) or feel decent even one day. It scared me, this drug, but they said it was the only chance I had.

In the meantime I started some eastern approaches. Went to a functional neurological chiropractor and acupuncture. My new acupuncturist told me at our last appointment he had been reading about my disease and it was good I lived in a community that offered such good palliative and hospice care. After I told him exactly what I thought of those words being aimed at me, I left, cried for hours, and sought out my previous acupuncturist who said nothing like that.

I have tried to avoid gluten, and sugar. Three days a week I go to yoga class and I meditated at night when I could not sleep. 

Yesterday I went back to the hospital for a day of testing to see if the drug was working. The odds were not good, they told me that. My friend Susan took me, I never go alone thanks to my wonderful therapist Katie who insists I rely on my tribe. I woke up, meditated, drank tea, stretched and readied for this definitive day of testing. The news was going to be either really good or really bad. No middle ground.

I asked for spiritual help on Facebook. Hundreds of you responded.

My daughter and I just got back from the doctors. The doctor was befuddled. The cat scan showed the disease was nearly GONE!!! He did not know what to make of it, no one expected that. Where the white areas had been there were foggy places of grey. He said six more months of the meds then I would be done with both the meds and the hospital, in effect, I was CURED!!! Finally, finally I fall on the lucky side of unlikely! (Well, it was actually the second time since my odds of surviving a 9cm aneurysm was 2%). It does not matter what did it, changes in my environment, drugs, eastern medicine, FB prayers. It is a miracle that no one, not even the most experienced doctor there in the rare lung disease department expected. I have one more visit and then I am no longer a member of that club. I have the first great bill of health I have had in two solid years. 

Thank you, all of you for your support. Love to you and yours and 

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

85 Comments

  1. Oh honey, this is the best news ever! So so happy for you! Thanks for letting us know.

    • Thank you Nancy for sharing this joy with me!

  2. I am so happy for you & can only imagine how you must be feeling.

    • It is pretty amazing. Still hasn’t sunk in entirely. Thank you Lynn.

  3. An answer to prayer from God, our Heavenly Father. I am thrilled to read the amazing results! IF you could find a strong Christian Doctor, HE might attribute it to the ONLY miracle worker. Yes, GOD is still in the miracle business!

    • I am very glad to be the recipient of this miracle and thank you for celebrating with me Mary Helen!

  4. Miracles do happen Jill, there are a lot of us out here praying for you ! I am overjoyed for you ..

    • Thank you for your prayers Leslie!

  5. that is wonderful and I believe it is a miracle! so happy for you1

    • Thank you Cindie!!!

  6. I have goosebumps on my goosebumps on my goosebumps! I think I shall be doing my happy dance until sometime next week! 2017 will be a year to celebrate. Much love to you 💜

    • Yay for goosebumps and dancing! Thank you for your support Annie!

  7. I’m humbled by your bravery and reduced to tears by this sharing and so very very happy for you may your continued good health thrive and may you loins ever more sparkling moments of joy in your wild and wonderful life xx well done big love hugs and miracle medicine xxxxxx

    • Bernadette I so appreciate your support. Thank you for sharing this with me.

  8. A Christmas miravle,sending more healing thoughts snd prayers til you arec100 percent

    • Thank you Sharon, I so appreciate your sentiments and intend to heal entirely!!!

  9. Jill, I am over the moon for you! What wonderful news!

    • Thank you Claire for being here and sharing this with me!

  10. Wow! I keep thinking, what do I say to you in response of all you have been through and where you are now? I have no words but offer you a humongous virtual bear hug of love.

    • And a big virtual bear hug right back at you Elizabeth!

  11. Oh that is soooo good to hear!!!! Oh my goodness!! Doningvtge happy dance for you Jill!!
    -one of the tribe
    Xoxox
    KIKI

    • Vanessa thank you for being a part of my very strong tribe!

  12. A true miracle! I’m so happy for you! I will continue to keep you in my prayers, Jill, for continued health and a quick, complete recovery. Your books are out on my nightstand to remind me to pray daily. There they will remain when I’m not browsi9ng through them for inspiration. Happy New Year!

    • Thank you Eileen, I so appreciate your support, both for my books and my health!

  13. Oh Jill – This is the best news ever! Big hugs and Big LOVE to you. xoxo I’m so happy for you and for ME and for ALL of your loved ones.

    • Much love to you Lisa, and thank your for so long being a very important part of my tribe!

  14. Such good news Jill, You have inspired so many with your teaching you have a lot of people who genuinely care and wish the best for you.

    xoxoxo

    • You are a dear Cami and I am so glad for your support.

  15. Dear Jill,
    I can’t begin to imagine how difficult this journey has been for you. I admire your courage and strength. Thank you for sharing your story so that we can celebrate your miracle with you and know that amazing miracles happen.
    I am also so grateful for the gift of art and inspiration that you shared in Taos.
    Karen

    • Oh Karen, thank you for your kind words and support. Happy New Year!

  16. Best news ever!!!!! So happy for you!!!!!!!! Sending hugs of joy and triumph!!!!!!!!!

    • Jan, it really is and I thank you for sharing it with me!

  17. It’s wonderful to hear this good news. I wish you continued and complete recovery, so you can get back to the life you want to lead. Hooray!

    • Thanks Kristi, I have long delayed my “real” life and look forward to getting back to it. The best to you.

  18. lets celebrate!!!

    • For sure Deedee!

  19. Oh my gosh, Jill, I had no idea. So so very happy you are on the other side of this. Congratulations! Love, prayers, and hugs to you.

    • Kim, thank you for your support! Hugs to you too!

  20. To put it in simple terms: Thank God!

    • Yes, exactly. xo

  21. I really am speechless, but in a good way. A very good way. Perhaps a miracle but you deserve that miracle, hallelujah! xo

    • Thanks Lorri, I appreciate you being my friend.

  22. Horrifying story with a surprise happy ending. I’m so glad you were able to get the experimental drug! We’ve been friends for a long time, since before I was old enough to drive and you’re a couple years younger than me. Let me share with you one reason why you’ve been successful with your unfortunate medical challenges: Drive. Some people have it but most don’t. It’s one of the things I’ve always appreciated about you. You figure out where you want to go in life and do whatever it takes to get there, no matter how challenging or difficult. Congrats on the excellent news!

    • Dan, you are so kind, thanks for making this effort. I did not know you saw me that way, it is similar to how I see you. Go get ’em attitude!

  23. Yay and yay and yay. Exhaling with you – it’s been a long houl. love & hugs!

    • I like that big exhale Sally, mine might last a week or so. xoxo

  24. Very Dear Jill — You are a miracle and always will be. We’re with you every day.

    • Jan, thank you. I have known you forever and so appreciate your support.

  25. So thrilled to hear this encouraging news, Jill! A good start to the new year! Hang in there for those last 6 months of treatment.

    • Kit, that is the only downside to this day, six more months of feeling so very tired and mentally challenged. I am keeping my eye on the prize. The best to you.

  26. Thrilled to hear this news! AWSOME!! I am giving credit to God since he is the only one in the miracle business!
    Your former roomie
    LoLo

    • Hey Lolo, so nice to see you here and thank you for your good wishes. It surely is awesome!

  27. You place in time and space has touched so many. Thank you for being willing and open with your process and feelings. Miracles do happen, and I’m thrilled that you’ve been the recipient of another case of beating the odds. Now, on to LIFE. Looking forward to seeing you this summer.

  28. Oh Jill, that is fabulous news! I am so happy for you!!

  29. God is good!!! Such wonderful news!!!

  30. This is such wonderful news! Congratulations on this excellent diagnosis! Much love to you and Happy New Year! 🎆

    • Thank you so much Kimberly and Happy New Year to you too!

  31. Wonderful news, Jill! Every little bit helps. I love knowing you are getting well!

    • Ann I agree, all good news is good for all of us. I hope you are surrounded by good news!

  32. I am so happy for you, Jill! What wonderful news! Thank so much for sharing.

    • Thanks for your support Cathy!

  33. It’s a true Christmas miracle!!! So happy to hear this news!

    • I think it is Jodi, thanks for being here with me.

  34. Jill, I’m thrilled to hear your inspiring story. What a warrior you are! I do believe in miracles and that they are not rare, I believe in the power of communal focused prayer, and guardian angels. I believe in Cellcept (I have been taking it ever since my liver transplant last year). Thank you for your openness and courage in sharing your harrowing but courageous account of your walk on the razor’s edge with all of your health challenges. I pray that God will continue to bless you and heap blessings and overwhelming love on you. No one gets through experiences like this alone, and I pray for blessings on those who have supported you in every way possible. I’m celebrating your victory with gratitude!

    • Hi Beth, I know you have been though the mill and back too, and I am also grateful for your recovery! We both need to be grateful for our tribes, and mine has never mattered more. What an ordeal! Love to you and may your health thrive.

  35. Thrilled to hear your wonderful news. God IS the author of miracles. I’m so glad you are the recipient of this one.

    • Thank you for your kind thoughts, I appreciate it!

  36. Jill, I am thanking God today for His answer to our prayers. My heart leaped for joy as I read your message. I am so very grateful that your ordeal is over. With God, all things are possible! Hugs, Terri

    • Thank you for your kind thoughts Terri.

  37. Dear Jill: I can’t believe what you’ve gone through, though of course I DO believe it. So grateful that finally “luck” (whatever that is) dropped down on your side big time. So relieved and happy for you.

    • Thank you Joannah, it is a crazy story that I am very glad is changing direction. I hope you are well and happy!

  38. You are very brave. A toast to onward and upward and back to living.

    • And a toast to you too Monica!

  39. Wow, and double wow. That is fabulous news, and I’m so happy for you.

    • Thank you Susanna, I appreciate that!

  40. What an extraordinary scary experience you have been having — and what an equally extraordinary miracle. So happy for you and sending continued well wishes for good health and a wonderful new year.

    • Guess it was a go large or go home kind of year. Thank you for your well wishes Seth and I wish the same for you!

  41. so happy for you. Can’t wait to see what art you will make now

  42. What fantastic news Jill. I knew about your heart issues from last year, but of course nothing of your new problems. I am so happy for you, Steve and the children. On December 27th I received your card with the great picture of Sydney and Sam, so it was a great day for me too, since I had heard from you.

    It is special to be able to call you my friend.

    Always,

    Duke

    • Duke, it sure has been a ride! I hope you are well and happy and enjoying a grand and healthy life. xoxox Jill

  43. This is a miracle, for sure! I’m so happy for you. God has intervened and all shall be well. All manner of things shall be well. Xoxoxo

  44. Jill, what a wonderful almost end to such an amazingly tough journey you’ve traveled. I knew you were still working on recovery and am sorry you weren’t able to share your current status. The body takes so long to respond some times – you are definately loved and are still here to share your gifts to your many families and friends! Challenges here have kept from fb the better part of the fall. But they are nothing compared to yours. I’m thrilled and pleased for the encouraging visit at National Jewish. Looking forward to more workshops down the road!!!! Blessings and much gratitude for you! Love, Lynn

  45. I wasn’t sure what was going on but am so happy to read such miraculous news! It’s a Hanukkah/Chrustmas miracle. You & George Bailey can run through the streets together of Bedford Falls! So relieved for you! And what a great way to start the new year. Happy New Year!

  46. I am so happy to hear that you are headed in the right direction. Glad you are well and ready to inspire in 2017

  47. Thank you for sharing your incredible story, both the bad and good parts. I’m so glad to hear that you are on the mend, and only have a few more months to have to deal with the bad parts. I still hope we have a chance to get together again – I so miss our Artfest days and exploring Seattle.

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