Kelly Ann For Organ Donation

I am so honored to have Kelly Ann as my first post for the Everyday Beautiful Project. I could not have asked for a more perfect person to show to the world! Kelly Ann is a friend of mine. We have kids the same age and the more I have come to know her, the more I stand in awe!! Before I say much more I want to introduce Kelly Ann and her amazing story. I asked her to write up something for me so I could get the facts on her life... I am going to just share what she gave me... Because what better way than from the person herself! Here is her amazing story:

"I'm not sure exactly what to write, so I will just give you a rundown of me. I am 42 years old and have lived in the same small town most of my life except for while I was away at college and when I got married I moved down south with my husband before moving back to my hometown.

Wade and I have had a few struggles in our lives just like everyone else. When I was young my parents noticed I couldn't hear very well. I had tubes in my ears, which helped a little. They took me to a School of the deaf and blind for testing. When I was 5, right before starting kindergarten, I got my first pair of hearing aids. I remember riding home in the car and tapping the dashboard and being in awe because it made a sound when I tapped and I could hear it. I was so proud of those hearing aids. For kindergarten pictures, I had my mom braid my hair back behind my ears so the would show.

Grade school went well for several years. I got glasses in fourth grade. No biggie. In sixth grade, I started to get sick. The summer before school started, our family went camping at a lake. In September, my parents had meeting in Hawaii, so my grandma stayed with us kids. I was so sick that week. I kept blacking out and getting light headed. I was so thirsty all the time and my stomach cramped so bad. When my parents came home, they could not believe how much weight I had lost. They took me to the doctor where I was diagnosed with Diabetes Type 1. This opened a new chapter in my life. I was scared but learned to deal with it. I didn't get much better though and was continually losing weight and sick. We went back to the doctor. I was diagnosed with Giardia. It is a parasite caused from contaminated water. We figure I got it from the lake that summer. The medication they put me on cured the Giardia. I felt better while on the medication, but as soon as I was off it, I started getting sick again. My parents took me to the city to the top hosipitals. After more hospitals stays and tons of testing, I was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis. My colon was so bad, they could not save it. In July I went into the Childrens Hospital and had a total Colectomy. It was a very difficult time for a 12 year old girl. I had many complicaitons and was slowly dying. They had to do more surgery because my main artieries were cutting off my bowels. Anyway, maybe too much info, but I went home with a temporary ileostomy for three months. I had another hospital stay in between the three months from getting sick from my bowels being kinked. I got to be VERY CLOSE to the nurses on the fourth wing of the Childrens Hospital. In November, I went in for a reversal of the ileostomy and was given an internal pouch. From this point on, I had wonderful years through out high school and college. The Diabetes was the only thing I had to really watch.

I got married to Wade in 1995. We were married about 5 years and I was not able to get pregnant. After going through different procedures and such, I found out that I would not be able to bear children. This was so devastating to us because we wanted a family so bad. It was a very difficult and emotional time because I watched my sister have children and was happy for her yet ached inside. In 2002, we received the most beautiful gift any parents could ask for, a birth mother had contacted our bishop and we were asked if we wanted to adopt the baby that she would have. My heart was so full of joy! We had been working on adoption and this was an answer to our prayers. Our oldest daughter was born in February of 2002. I had the privilege to be part of her birth and we got her from the second she was born. We would later adopt two more children. In 2006, we adopted our son as a new born and got to take him home from the hospital. In 2007, we went to China, where we adopted our youngest daughter. She was 10 months old when we got her. My two youngest children are one month apart in age. Our family was now complete.