Being born with Tetrology of Fallot, I was given a different path in life. My journey included Open Heart Surgery at 19 months old in addition to four other heart surgeries at ages 7, 9 and 23, with another Open Heart Surgery at 28 years old in order to put in a pulmonary valve. I was bullied growing up because of my scar and learned successfully how to deal with it while building confidence along the way. I have witnessed Alcoholism first hand, have seen what rock bottom looks like and hows to rebuild it with life and love. I have known since I was younger that my passion in life is to help people, and although my main focus is working with the children in the Pediatric Cardiology Units and their families around the United States, I will help anyone, anywhere, at anytime.
Being born with Sickle Cell, would normally be looked at as a disadvantage, but I always viewed it as a blessing in disguise. My journey has included a lot of physical pain, hospital stays, ICU visits, rapid weight loss, physical therapy and restricted activities. I had always associated these trials in my life with lifting weights; the more trials you endure, the stronger you become. It is the people who life the most weight, who have the ability to learn life’s greatest lessons. With the help of God, my family and the brilliant medical staff who took care of me, I learned that anything is possible, as long as you keep a positive mindset. My parents have always told me “Adversity is a fact of life. It can’t be controlled. What we can control is how we react to it.”