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6 Young Adult Books About Transplants

Going through a transplant can be extremely tiring, frustrating, and feeling like you’re in isolation. But you’re not alone! Here are 6 books that prove that:

1. “Faceless” by Alyssa Sheinmel
When Maisie Winters wakes up, she’s in the hospital. The last thing she remembers is running through the hills of her neighborhood one misty morning. Slowly, she puts the pieces together. Before she could make it home, a storm gathered. Lightning hit a power line and sparks rained down, the hot-burning electrical fire consuming her. Destroying her face. Where her nose, cheeks, and chin used to be, now there is…nothing. Maisie’s lucky enough to qualify for a rare medical treatment: a face transplant. At least, everyone says she’s lucky. But with someone else’s features staring back at her in the mirror, Maisie looks—and feels—like a stranger. The doctors promised that the transplant was her chance to live a normal life again, but nothing feels normal anymore. Before, she knew who she was—a regular girl who ran track and got good grades, who loved her boyfriend and her best friend. Now, she can’t even recognize herself. New York Times bestselling author Alyssa Sheinmel has created a gripping and gorgeously written tale of identity and love. This is a story of losing yourself and the long, hard fight to find your way back.

2. “Five Feet Apart” by Rachael Lippincott
In this moving story two teens fall in love with just one minor complication—they can’t get within five feet of each other without risking their lives. Can you love someone you can never touch? Stella Grant likes to be in control—even though her totally out of control lungs have sent her in and out of the hospital most of her life. At this point, what Stella needs to control most is keeping herself away from anyone or anything that might pass along an infection and jeopardize the possibility of a lung transplant. Six feet apart. No exceptions. The only thing Will Newman wants to be in control of is getting out of this hospital. He couldn’t care less about his treatments, or a fancy new clinical drug trial. Soon, he’ll turn eighteen and then he’ll be able to unplug all these machines and actually go see the world, not just its hospitals. Will’s exactly what Stella needs to stay away from. If he so much as breathes on Stella she could lose her spot on the transplant list. Either one of them could die. The only way to stay alive is to stay apart. But suddenly six feet doesn’t feel like safety. It feels like punishment. What if they could steal back just a little bit of the space their broken lungs have stolen from them? Would five feet apart really be so dangerous if it stops their hearts from breaking too?

3. “Things We Know By Heart” by Jessi Kirby
In this unforgettable novel, Quinn Sullivan falls for the recipient of her boyfriend’s donated heart. After Quinn’s boyfriend, Trent, dies in an accident their junior year, she reaches out to the recipients of his donated organs in hopes of picking up the fragments of her now-unrecognizable life. But whoever received Trent’s heart has chosen to remain silent. The essence of a person, Quinn has always believed, is in the heart. If she finds Trent’s, then in a way, she will still have a piece of him. Risking everything to get closure once and for all, Quinn goes outside the system to track down nineteen-year-old Colton Thomas, whose life has been forever changed by this priceless gift. But what starts as an accidental run-in quickly develops into something more, sparking an undeniable attraction. She doesn’t want to give in to it—especially since he has no idea how they’re connected—but the time Quinn spends with Colton makes her feel alive again. No matter how hard she’s falling for Colton, though, each beat of his heart reminds her of all she’s lost . . . and all that remains at stake.

4. “Heart To Heart” by Lurlene McDaniel
Elowyn Eden and Kassey Messechek are best friends. They share every aspect of their lives. But one thing Elowyn has not yet shared with Kassey is that she checked the organ donor box on her newly acquired driver's license. Kassey only learns of this in a startling and devastating way—when Elowyn's life-giving donor wishes are about to be honored. Arabeth St. Clair has not had the luck to have a best friend. Due to her diseased heart, she's led a sheltered life. When Arabeth is sixteen, she and her mother receive the call that will change their lives—but they don't know to whom they should be forever grateful. When the worlds of these three girls and their families intersect, lives are changed in ways never imagined. Most especially, it is Kassey who sees things differently, for she can keep alive the memory of her dear friend by sharing the renewed life of another teenage girl, while helping to ease the pain of the two families involved and coming to terms with her own.

5. “Saving Jessica” by Lurlene McDaniel
Jessica McMillian and Jeremy Travino are a perfect couple. But now Jessica has been diagnosed as having kidney failure. She is on dialysis three days a week and is so depressed that she's not sure she wants to live. Her one hope for a normal life is a kidney transplant, but she's an only child and her parents aren't suitable donors. Jeremy is determined to donate one of his kidneys to her, but his parents are terrified of losing their only child. Will Jeremy find the strength to go against his parent's wishes and do what he must to save Jessica?

6. “The Arrival of Someday” by Jen Malone
In this heartfelt and emotionally candid contemporary YA, author Jen Malone delves into the life of a teen whose world is brought to an abrupt halt when she learns she’s in dire need of an organ transplant. Hard-charging and irrepressible eighteen-year-old Amelia Linehan could see a roller derby opponent a mile away—and that’s while crouched down, bent over skates, and zooming around a track at the speed of light. They don’t call her Rolldemort for nothing! What she couldn’t see coming, however, was the unexpected flare-up of a rare liver disorder she was born with. But now it’s the only thing she—and everyone around her—can think about. With no guarantee of a viable organ transplant, everything Amelia’s been sure of—like her college plans, the mural she’d been commissioned to paint, or the possibility of one day falling in love—has become a huge question mark, threatening to drag her down into a sea of what-ifs she’s desperate to avoid. Then a friend from the past shows up. With Will, it’s easy to forget about what’s lurking underneath the lightness of their time together. It’s easy to feel alive when all signs point elsewhere. On the other hand, with the odds decidedly not in her favor, Amelia knows this feeling couldn’t last forever. But what can?

📚 Happy reading! ❤️

#themightyreaders #Transplant #CysticFibrosis #HeartTransplant #KidneyDisease

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Hello :)

I’m new to this app, I’m hoping to meet people who have similar illnesses and struggles, it’s hard finding anyone who can really understand what it’s like. Adding all my hashtags hoping that I’ll meet people going through the same things I am!if anyone wants to chat shoot me a message :) #ChronicIlless #Gastroparesis #PulmonaryArterialHypertension #PulmonaryHypertension #HeartTransplant #LungTransplant #heartfailure #MastCellActivationDisorder #EhlersDanlosSyndrome #HickmanLine #FeedingTube #Gtube #PrimaryImmunodeficiency

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When is it ok to give up?

TW: depression, trauma, terminal illness *super long vent, sorry*

I feel like this #Cancer is taking everything away from me, what little I had left. Prior to diagnosis in April, I had to quit my job for health reasons and filed for disability (medically approved now but for the cancer but still no final word from them). I was struggling with #CPTSD , #MajorDepressiveDisorder , #ObsessiveCompulsiveDisorder , #Fibromyalgia , #PsoriaticArthritis , #Asthma , #sjogrens , #SevereAllergies , #Bursitis , #PolycysticOvarySyndrome , #DiabetesType2 and a bunch of other complications from all of these things plus a few more diagnosed illnesses. All whilst trying to get a divorce (still trying to get it).

So in April I go to the ER thinking Covid. Nope. Lungs both full of fluid from #CongestiveHeartFailure . Apparently I had a heart attack and didn’t notice as I was told a lot of chronic pain patients don’t because we’re used to random severe pain. Also they found a grapefruit sized tumor on my liver, stage 4 #BileDuctCancer in my #liver and it had spread to some lymph nodes on my abdomen. I have no medical insurance.

So now here we are in July and I’ve been in chemo since May. I’ve had a few minor surgeries/procedures and I have to have my port removed/replaced which is why I’ve been in pain there since May.

Now it turns out on top of mouth problems, fatigue, low white blood cells as side effect to my #Chemotherapy , I have been diagnosed with #ChemotherapyinducedPeripheralNeuropathy which has been the most painful experience of my life. They said it was a severe case.

They also think either a #cateract or #Glaucoma in my left eye which is why my eye hurts and I can barely see. Either could leave me blind. I’m an artist by trade, I’ve won awards for my cakes and every one of my hobbies is art/craft/visual. Now I can’t tolerate any amount of light without it being painful and I can’t do anything with my hands without being in major pain from the neuropathy. I can’t enjoy anything or do anything for myself, already fell down the stairs last week because of my vision/neuropathy combo.

Also, I’ve had to get 2 Neupogen (helps bone marrow make white blood cells) shots this weekend and like every other week. The bone pain makes my body shake uncontrollably and nothing will help it.

All this has led to me being a walking pharmaceutical cocktail and the side effects are brutal. I picked up a new med today, tonight my little medicine bag overflowed and I broke down. I just turned 40 in May. I have more meds than years on this earth. I have a terminal illness that makes me ineligible for the heart transplant that I need but im technically not dying according to my oncologist.

So at what point is it ok to say I’ve done enough, I’m tired and I give up, I want out? Daily living is torture and there’s no joy.

Thank you if you made it this far!

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Living with Congestive Heart Failure

Both of my parents passed away of Congestive Heart Failure, my mom almost three years ago and my dad almost four months ago. So, I guess you could say it runs in the family.   I never thought in a million years that I would be diagnosed with Congestive Heart Failure, but I was. It will be ten years on November 21 of this year. It was interesting how I was diagnosed. I had routinely been giving blood at the local American Red Cross and the nurse noticed an irregular heartbeat when taking my pulse. She said, “has anyone ever told you that?” I was like, “no, I don’t think so.” Around this same time, I noticed that I was having shortness of breath, but attributed that to possibly walking too fast during my daily walks. I reached out to my regular doctor, told her my concerns and she ordered a stress test. It involves walking/running on a treadmill. When I had my appointment at the local hospital, they had to stop my stress test because I was breathing really, really hard. The technician stopped the test immediately, because of that. I started to get a little concerned, when they said, “hey, do you have time for a cardiac catherization?” I was like, “let me check with my husband, he’s expecting me back home soon.” Once I called my husband (he was watching the kids) and told him what was going on, he told me to go ahead and do the cardiac catherization since they had an open appointment. Okay, now I’m going to get a little graphic here. They put you flat on your back and put a catheter through your groin and up into the heart to see what the heck is going on. I was pretty chill, because I was positive they would just tell me I was stressed out (2011, up until that point was an extremely stressful year). After the cardiac catherization, I had to rest a bit. I will never forget what the cardiologist told me when he came in the room to tell me the results. He said, “Mrs. Blatnik, you have Congestive Heart Failure.“ Pardon me?? The next question immediately out of my mouth was, “so, what is the worst case scenario?” His matter-of-fact response was, “heart transplant.” It was at about this point, I began to feel like I was in a really bad dream. Shortly, after the cardiologist left, my husband, Lauren and Dominic came into the room. I think they were all surprised that what was supposed to be a stress test, ending up with me lying in a hospital bed!! Shortly after my family visited and left, my blood pressure took a dangerous turn. I remember feeling a little dizzy and me pushing the button for the nurse, because I was thinking something odd was going on.  The next thing I know, a bunch of doctors and nurses ran into the room, trying to get my blood pressure stabilized. It was like 30/10 or something around there.  I think they gave me a medication to bring it back up (I don’t remember) and I started to feel better and my blood pressure went back up. I was kept overnight in the hospital, because of that little episode and I went home the next day. All I kept thinking in my head was that I would need a heart transplant and/or be hooked up to an oxygen tank for the rest of my life, I was just 48 at the time. Luckily, the cardiologist has me on a “cocktail” of medications that keep everything in check. I make sure to NEVER miss the medications and I go yearly to the cardiologist. When I tell people that I have Congestive Heart Failure, typically a look of shock is next. Once I tell them it is managed mostly by medications, I see them relax.  I have an echocardiogram coming up on September 27. Since my dad’s passing in December of 2020, I definitely have been thinking more about my own diagnosis of Congestive Heart Failure. What if that nurse hadn’t noticed my irregular heartbeat that day in 2011 when I donated blood? She literally saved my life. I like to think she was my “guardian angel,” because I only saw her that one time and never again. Neither of my parent’s Congestive Heart Failure diagnoses came soon enough for them to be treated for it. I am very blessed that I was and I don’t ever take a day for granted.

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Anxiety, Depression and Fibromyalgia

I have been treated for anxiety and depression since my daughters heart transplant in 2016, going through counseling I was diagnosed with PTSD due to childhood trauma- I was abused sexually, physically, verbally and mentally by my aunts boyfriend, my aunt, my mother and brother respectively. My daughters transplant was the catalyst that sent me spiraling- I thought I had life together. I have cut those people out of my life entirely but just yesterday I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia. I feel like they are winning all over again. Another way they have complete control over my life, as I read where childhood trauma can be linked to Fibromyalgia. I am on an antidepressant and an anti anxiety medication, also two high blood pressure meds. I feel broken but I know its a good broken because rock bottom is where you can finally climb to the top.

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Prayers needed

So alot has been goin on. And I'm trying to keep everything together in my mind but its all scrambled. I have an uncle who is close to my mom she is the eldest and he the youngest is in the hospital. His heart is at 47 bpm he needs a heart transplant. And I have some other stuff on my mind. And I'm in need of prayer or kind words. I just need comfort. I feel afraid and helpless and lost. #help

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After Christmas

As someone you has fibromyalgia, chronic migraines, and who is a heart transplant recipient of 10+ years, I find that Christmas gets harder & harder every year. There is so much noise and smells and chaos, etc that it really isn't enjoyable anymore. I have to put on a "mask" and tell everyone I'm great otherwise I get the, "what is wrong?" Or "I'm sorry." Or "It's Christmas what do you mean you hurt?" No one in my family has ever bothered to get to know the real me or has ever really wanted me to tell them how I truly feel. No one knows how to deal with the true answers. I'm writing because I want to know what you do to pick yourself back up after the chaos & exhaustion from Christmas? I'm in a hole and having problems surfacing. Any advice or relatable experiences would be helpful! -Keilee

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Vent

So I got some bad family news yesterday and had to comfort my mom who is the eldest of her siblings there were 5 now there are 4. She lost one of her brothers a few years ago to lung cancer and yesterday she got the news that her youngest brother needs a heart transplant. His heart is working at 10%. She cried the whole day and tried to talk to him but he is in denial about his health. His wife cut him off from her insurance so he wasnt able to take his heart pills which kinda had something to do with his diagnosis he also had open heart surgery years back and is a chain smoker which doesn't help. He's also going through a very bad divorce and not even his own daughters care for him. I dont know how his son from another marriage will take this news. They had a falling out a few years back but now they are close since his ex wife and daughters dont want anything to do with my uncle. So that's my vent/rant. I am worried. #Worrying #Family #afraid

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Newbe

I'm just sad because a good friend of 27 years just told me she needs a heart transplant. This is really bad news n I feel more sad because the first week of January she was planning on getting a puppy because she lost her dog 5 years ago n was ready to have a new companion n now she can't even walk up her stairs to her apartment.

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