Live Life. Give Life.- Brooke Lillie’s Story

November 20, 2019

My name is Brooke Lillie. When I was 15 months old I received the Gift of Life…a new heart. Today, almost 23 years later, I am living to tell my story.

When I was only 13 months old I was diagnosed with restrictive cardiomyopathy. The only cure for this heart disease was a heart transplant. After only 5 weeks of being on the waiting list for a new heart, we got the call that changed my life forever.

A mother who had just lost her 13 month old baby boy had made the decision to donate his organs and give life to many others, one of those being myself.

After I had my transplant my parents did everything they could to help me live a normal life. As a child and while growing up, I was always involved in school and sports. I grew up being a cheerleader, being in show choir, and being involved in the transplant Olympics!

Having had a transplant and growing up in and out of the hospital is what lead me to where I am today–a wife and a nurse. After High school I went to Jones County Junior College (JCJC) where I was a cheerleader for two years and where I later went to nursing school. I am now a registered nurse at Forrest General Hospital.

Growing up I never had any doubt about what I wanted to be when I was older. I’ve always wanted to be a nurse and now because of organ donation saving my life, I’m getting to live out my dream. It brings me so much joy to be able to now give back to my community and to be able to help others as a nurse. I can only hope that my story can bring hope and inspiration to others, including my patients.

During my time at JCJC I met my best friend who introduce me to the love of my life, my husband Adam Lillie. We had the most perfect wedding on November 3, 2018 and we are loving life together.

However, due to the anti-rejection medications I’ve been taking for the past 20+ years, I was diagnosed with chronic renal failure. I battled Chronic Kidney Disease for several years but this past August things took a turn for the worst. I was admitted to the hospital and started on dialysis.

On September 23, 2019 my husband and my hero donated his kidney to me. I have been so blessed to find someone who stands by my side literally through sickness and in health. I may be biased but I always say I have the best husband in the world.

The older I get the more I realize how important organ donation awareness truly is. Too many people are not educated on the facts and myths of organ donation and I hope that my story can bring awareness to others.

It is possible to live a normal, healthy life after transplant. I know because I’ve done it!

My family and I will forever be grateful for organ donation. I would not be alive today if it wasn’t for a heartbroken mother’s selfless decision or the undeserving decision of my husband to save my life.

If you are not a registered organ donor I encourage you to become one today.

Live life. Give Life.

-Brooke Miley Lillie, 24, Bay Springs