Mother of 5 to get new heart
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Laquisha Mathis has been living with cardiomyopathy and congestive heart failure. In February she was told she had six months to live unless she received a life-saving heart transplant.
At the time, under her health care policy she was unable to receive the transplant but thanks to her determined doctors and a story that first aired on News4Jax in March, she said she's receiving a second chance at life.
"At the end of the day God touched them to reach down and pull my name out of the basket and say, ‘Were going to help this young lady right here. We're going to save another life today,'" Mathis said.
Most people don't get a second chance at life and with Mathis, her health had been going downhill fast, which is why she was chosen to be a candidate for a life-changing procedure.
"I'm excited to see what's my next chapter in my life. How I'm going to act, how I'm going to be with this new heart, because I'm so used to being weak and tired all the time," Mathis said.
Mathis was told by her doctors after her diagnoses in February that she might not make it until August. But after making it halfway through September and after facing multiple closed doors, Mathis, a mother of five, said she received the news she was praying for all along.
"I thought, ‘Oh, OK, they're just playing. They're just doing that because they saw my story (on the news) or whatever.' I got a letter today saying that I am officially on the heart transplant list," Mathis said.
For the last few months Channel 4 has followed Mathis' journey as she said her health weakened but her faith remained strong until she received the news from the Mayo Clinic saying that because of her declining health she would now be placed at the top of the list for the first available heart transplant.
"There's some people that don't get a second chance and I have a second chance at life. I have five reasons to want to be here and my kids are my No. 1 priority," Mathis said.
At the age of 35 with congestive heart failure, Mathis isn't the first person in her family to face the disease. But she said she will continue the battle from her hospital bed in honor of her cousin who wasn't as fortunate, dying from the disease at 33.
"She didn't get a second chance so I'm honored to get a second chance at life because she didn't make it, and she was only 33. And she didn't make it, so it's like I'm doing this for her and me. I'm surviving so I can be able to see my kids graduate and get married," Mathis said.
Mathis said that when she gets her new heart, she plans to be an adoptive parent and she will be participating in a running event that her sister is organizing to celebrate her recovery.
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