Embracing My Second Chance at Life

Michigan-based Leeanne Marie Stephenson's Web site can be reached at http://www.lmstephenson.com

| Jan 11, 2008

My introduction into the world of diabetes occurred long ago, when I was diagnosed with brittle diabetes at the age of six. I spent the majority of my childhood in the hospital. There, my doctors, nurses, and nutritionists taught me how to balance my food intake and insulin injections so that I could lead a somewhat normal life.

I was so impressed by their patience, sensitivity, and positive can-do attitude that I wanted to become part of their care-giving community, and I became a registered nurse. After graduating with honors from Mercy Central School of Nursing in Grand Rapids, Michigan, I secured a position as a registered nurse at Blodgett Hospital.

Over the next 10 years, I married my high school sweetheart and started a family. Periodically I changed jobs to meet the demands of parenthood and family life. Then my life took a dramatic turn as I was diagnosed with kidney failure due to my diabetes. The prognosis was less than promising. As my physical condition deteriorated, I was forced to give up my career as a nurse. Fatigue and weakness became my entire world as I underwent dialysis treatments.

Once again, I was on the receiving end of medical care. Desperate and determined to remain connected to this wonderful profession, I started writing a romance novel based on the experiences I had encountered as a nurse. When the days that lay ahead of me seemed impossible to face, I did not allow my tears to compromise my strength.

Instead of giving up during the darkest time in my life, I drew on the love that surrounded me from my wonderful husband and family. When I wrote, I was released from my physical problems and taken back into the world of nursing, which I love so much. Romantic stories can always release us from the problems of real life. They send us into a fantasy world where our imaginations can soar. I strove to take my readers and myself into that world. Thus was born my book, "A Prescription for Love. "

This book is very special because it represents the strong love that surrounded me and motivated me throughout my lowest point. The one driving force in my life was to be there for my family, especially my precious children. By example, I demonstrated to them that when adversity is overwhelming, you still have to endure. I reached deep inside myself and drew upon my core values of perseverance and unfaltering resolve to overcome the obstacles in my life and achieve one of my dreams!

After a year on dialysis, I was told I could have a kidney transplant. My wonderful brother stepped forward and gave me the gift of life. From that moment on, my whole world changed for the better, and I eagerly embraced this second chance at life. When I felt well enough, I set about getting my romance story published so that I could be an inspirational example of what can be accomplished when life seems overwhelmingly hopeless.

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