My Story: Elizabeth and Severe Asthma

Diagnosed as a baby, Elizabeth has been living with severe asthma her entire life. In this video, she describes the severe asthma attack that was the turning point in her treatment.

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Transcript

00:00
[MUSIC PLAYING] ELIZABETH: I've been living with asthma my whole entire life. [MUSIC PLAYING]
00:07
I was first diagnosed when I was a baby. The one thing that I like people to know about asthma is that it's real, that it's life threatening,
00:15
that it shouldn't be something that you take lightly. Asthma feels like you're breathing through the size of a pinhole.
00:22
It's an absolutely awful feeling. The one thing I would tell people is to be kind because it's an awful feeling
00:29
to have people think that you're faking it. They think it's not as bad as it looks. And it truly is because it nearly took my life.
00:36
My worst asthma flare-up was August 24, 2014. I thought I was going to die because I
00:43
was like, if I don't get to the hospital, I'm not going to make it. I later found out that I had gone into cardiac arrest
00:50
and flatlined, and they brought me back. That was the turning point in my life with asthma.
00:58
I'm going to take better care of myself, and I'm going to start taking the proper precautions.
01:04
The last 20 years of my life, I've not let it become me. I'm not my illness. I really think that people should be proactive in their search for their own care.
01:14
I feel like there's more options to regulate your asthma now than there was when I was growing up.
01:21
I love creating. That is my pillow of support. I'm an artist. So in the bad days, on the good days,
01:27
you can find me painting, illustrating, anything that involves my hands and colors.
01:34
That's how I stay happy, and my children and my husband, of course. But I also know that there's a silver lining at the end of the tunnel.
01:41
Make sure that you have a support system. Take care of yourselves. Don't let this illness define who you are because it
01:48
doesn't define who you are. It just enhances you that much more. [MUSIC PLAYING]

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