Why I Walk: Phyllis Shapiro
Its 2009 and our baby graduates from college and comes home to plan his future. A short time passes and something isn't right. Diagnosis: Lupus.
Tests, transfusions, chemo, blood tests and more tests. The drill was too much for a parent to bear. But, what about the son?? Our son?? Every breath was hard. But what about the son?? Every thought, every minute, every heartbeat, pain and anguish. But what about the son?? Our son?? Kidney function diminishing. Transplant list. Words like dialysis flying in the air. I keep saying breathe, smile, breathe, smile. One foot in front of the other. But what about the son?
A miracle! A perfect match! Our angel has arrived and its his older brother.
July 2014 we enter the hospital and our boys are whisked away in different directions. Surgeons, nurses, medical students coming and going. How do parents wait for hours for some words of encouragement. But we wait, and we wait, and we wait and finally a surgeon emerges. Donor is done and he is doing well. Can we breathe finally, No. Not even a little. And we wait some more. Three more hours, grueling hours and a surgeon appears and he says recipient is done and all is well.
We can't think about that day not even as it gets further and further away from us. It was the worst day of our lives and it was the best day of our lives.
July 8 will be his three year anniversary. Yes we call it his birthday and we celebrate his rebirth.
We all need research, meds, miracles and a cure. No one should ever have to go thru the fear and uncertainty at any age. That's why we collect donations and that's why we are all here today.
My husband Barry and I, our sons Matt and Jeff, along with so many friends, family members, neighbors, businesses and customers who shop in our Apricot Lane Boutiques helped us to raise so far, an amazing $5,000. And we are not done. We are not done.
My name is Phyllis Shapiro and I'm from Boynton Beach and along with my husband Barry and our friends, walk today for our son Jeff and for Team Jeff. Thank you.