Kate Rootsey from Queensland, Australia, was born with cystic fibrosis, a life-threatening genetic disease causing progressive lung damage. When she was 26, her life was saved by a double lung transplant and six years later she became the first Queenslander to give birth after this operation.
Kate was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis at birth. Her life revolved around an intensive regime of drugs, treatments and hospitalisations. At the age of 26 she was told her only hope was a double lung transplant, without which she would die. On oxygen and needing a wheelchair to leave the house, Kate knew her time was running out.
“It was like breathing through a straw. By the end I couldn’t even brush my hair or clean my teeth by myself,” she explains.
After 13 months of waiting, a matching donor was found and two weeks later, Kate left the hospital, able to breathe again and with a second chance of life. She says that the transformation in her life since the transplant is “just indescribable”.
Kate was overjoyed when her transplant team gave her the go-ahead to pursue her dream of motherhood. In February 2013 she gave birth to her baby girl, Molly Grace, meaning ‘wanted blessing’. She sums up her feelings about the amazing person who gave her all these opportunities by saying:
“Some people have heroes that they watch on TV or whose music they listen to. I will never meet my hero because that person is my donor. They gave me life and they allowed me to create a life – my beautiful daughter Molly”.