Audrea & Jeff Medina´s story
Family means everything to Audrea and Jeff. Their strong marriage helped them get through the traumatic event of losing a child and Audrea getting short bowel syndrome. Audrea could not have made it to where she is today without Jeff being so supportive. He became her hero!
It was a shock losing 95% of the small intestine and her life changed forever.
Audrea and Jeff were expecting their fourth child but the baby died during the first trimester. Audrea had to go through a routine procedure to remove the fetus. Unfortunately, Audrea´s uterus was perforated during the procedure and the blood supply to her small intestine was cut. She lost 95% of her small intestine, and wasn´t expected to live beyond that weekend.
Audrea´s three children were brought to visit her at the hospital. Audrea´s two-year old daughter looked at her and said, "That's not my mommy." At that moment, Audrea fell apart. She started crying buckets and buckets of tears. It was devastating to her.
Set goals and learn how to live your new life
Setting goals helped Audrea recover. A nurse who was nicknamed "the drill sergeant" overheard Audrea´s sadness. She said, "Now, this is what you're going to do. You're gonna get up, take a shower, open the blinds, and go for a walk. Every single morning." Audrea followed the nurse's direction. She needed to get out of bed to prove to herself that she was going to be okay and that she still had use. “That nurse was the exact nurse that I needed to get me out of that bed.”
Take action and optimize the care you need
It is important to talk to your doctor. After time at home, Audrea was referred to a major medical center for a transplant evaluation. Transplant was not an option for her, but she made the 700-mile journey to that medical center once a year to see the intestinal rehabilitation doctors. After doing this for seven years, Audrea said to her husband, "Jeff, I wish these were my doctors all the time. My life would be so much easier." He agreed that it was time to get the care that Audrea needed. The family relocated to live closer to the intestinal rehabilitation doctors. It was a key decision for their family and the best decision they made for prolonging her life.