Thursday 3 May 2012

"I treat CF, it doesn't treat me."

I was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis at five weeks old so I have never known any other way of life.

Having CF growing up has been a big challenge with having regular hospital appointments; this meant I missed a lot of school over the years, so I was always playing catch up.

Throughout paediatric care I was having IVs every six months. I was lucky enough for my mum to have learnt how to do them, which meant I was able to have the antibiotics at home. With having frequent IVs my veins started to pick up a lot of scar tissue so at the age of ten years old I had my first portacath (port) put in my chest. I can remember that day as if it was yesterday - I was very scared and ended up locking myself in the toilet for awhile whilst I got my head around things. This port only lasted one year. I had my second port put straight in, and lasted about eight years before breaking during a course of IV antibiotics – but this time there were complications. At this time I had already moved to Liverpool Broadgreen Hospital. I remember having blue dye put through my port then having an X-ray to see where it had split - the doctors said it had broken and we booked a date to have it taken out. A short time later we were in the hospital cafe when suddenly my CF doctor, physiotherapist and a heart surgeon were sat at the table with us, I was told to finish what I was eating and a few hours later I was in theatre - the port hadn’t just split, the tube had broken off and had gone through my heart and was embedded in my left lung. When I came round the doctor said how lucky I was to still be with us. The day happened so quickly I didn’t have time to think about things but it really has opened my eyes on life.

At Liverpool they only give me IVs when and if I need them. Being very active I managed to not have any IVs for two years. Since leaving school I have gone on to coaching cricket for a living and over the last three years I’ve been lucky enough to win some awards (Shropshire Young Coach of the Year 2010, West Midlands Young Coach of the Year 2010 and Sky Sports National Young Coach of the Year 2010 runner-up).

Within the last two years I have lost two close friends who had CF so I have decided on 1 June 2012 myself and eight of my friends will be cycling from Land’s end to John O’Groats to help raise money and awareness for the Cystic Fibrosis Trust.

Being asked to take part and to be one of the faces of Cystic Fibrosis Week 2012 I couldn’t say no. This is a huge opportunity for me to help with awareness as it is hugely important people know about CF and the effect it has not only of the sufferer’s life but the effects it has on the family as well.

I’ve always looked at Cystic Fibrosis in the way that I treat CF, it doesn't treat me.


James Wojda

1 comment:

  1. You are amazing James, love you to bits x