Emily Kopp’s tale of courage: The Journey ahead…


All was going fine. I was going through my routine as normally as possible when suddenly in summers of 2010 I felt light headed and tired. It was summer of 2010 when I was feeling light-headed and tired. TheDoctors then informed me that the heart anti-rejection medicine is now causing my kidneys to fail. The room felt far too serious for the news, that I would eventually need a kidney transplant and would probably receive one within the year. By now I am proud of my scars, because these scars developed empathy in me toward other people who suffer from various serious medical conditions and was actually excited when I heard this. More scars to be proud of, would you not say that I was courageous??. I can be more like Sally from Nightmare Before Christmas. I was told that I would have to get bloodwork monthly and inject myself with Aranesp when needed. I told myself that it would be nothing compared to a heart transplant. Silly of me? No at that time it was a perfect thought, I was so positive and the fighter in me was telling me so.Silly me. I could have never have anticipated how long I could possibly wait and only thought of the end result.

In 2012, I got my first job at a place called Chicken Wow. I only worked there for a week until they stopped contacting me. Then I was hired at McDonald’s and worked there for about six months until I decided that I wanted to be treated better and make more money.

DJ’s Hope for Hearts surprised me with a gift card during 2012. I will never forget the kindness and concern given to me.

August of 2012, I started working as a bakery clerk at a grocery store. I had a lot of fun, but as time went on, things became increasingly hectic and difficult for me to keep up with by myself. In August of 2014, my kidneys were at 20% and I was beginning to have tired, dizzy, and dehydration spells. I was forgetting to check the temperatures of food more frequently and discovered that the heart by-pass machine used for my heart transplant effects my memory. Before I could turn in a doctor’s note on time, I was terminated. I was relieved because I thought that I could get proper help by filing a grievance. When I found out that they would not help me and that my grievance was denied, I was furious. I refused to put any effort further on working at such a company and began applying other places.

Applying became emotionally exhausting, and having had only two interviews, I began to lose hope more and more. Why this negativity is approaching me? I kept on wondering. I realize the urgency of having a job and that mycircumstances health condition are effecting affect my chances of getting one. With my hope, my health began to decline more. With my declining health my hope of getting job also declined. My blood pressure and cholesterol arelevel started increasing high, and level of iron and other nutrients started dipping low.

At present as a result of my kidneys failing, my BP and Cholesterol level is very high, while my iron and other nutrients are low, as a result of my kidneys failing. ,Mmy appetite can be horrible and fluctuating, I bruise easily, and feel tired and light-headed often.

For many months, I struggled to accept my reality and awoke in a new rage at my nightmare. I still struggle with it because I can’t picture my life in the future or how I will survive financially. I don’t like feeling helpless. It’s despairing. I’m torn between having a job that is tolerable or taking a huge risk in order to be happy. Currently, I’m in the process of being evaluated so I can be put on the list. All that is left to do is a heart biopsy May of 2015. It’s a waiting game that I have been anxious for from the beginning.

My life now consists of eating, sleeping, and overthinking. I miss having energy and enthusiasm. I sleep so much, I lose track of how long I sleep and my days bleed by. What day is it? It doesn’t matter. What matters is that I’m one day closer to being able to do something about my life. I will get through this.

Life is about being positive, striving to happy and live with self-esteem. I am a strong girl. I will not fail the young boy and his family who donated his heart and thought of other’s happiness during their misery. I draw strength from them, my family, Tony my boyfriend and scores of people who have been with me during my low and high times. I will live a long happy life bereft of misery and negativity.

Prom  Recovering

Len Merriman, Founding member of the board, DJ’s Hope for Hearts, conveys their forever support and strength to Emily : 

Emily K,
All of us at DJ’s Hope 4 Hearts Foundation are thankful for you allowing us to come into your life & follow your heart transplant journey for the past 4 years. We hope you nothing but the best with your continued journey’s and want you to know you we will always be with you on that journey.

You too can help Emily, and others like her. Please read more about how at this link

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