Erin O'Neil-Baker

“A Story of Success”

I was diagnosed with asthma at 6 months old in 1975 when there were very few medications and treatments for asthma.  I know what it is like to spend weeks at a time on the couch in the winter unable to breathe, to stick my head under steaming "tea treatments", to have an asthma attack because I laughed too hard, to get a C in gym every report card because I couldn't run, to fearfully imagine myself dying as I suffered from an attack because I had forgotten my medicine and was afraid to tell anyone, to have an asthma attack while swimming alone in the middle of a lake, to be rushed to the ER because I couldn't breathe and to take prednisone for months at a time.  I have suffered but now my asthma is controlled and last October I ran a 5k race and finished and DIDN'T have an attack!  My childhood was defined by asthma but now I tackle each day knowing that I define myself and I can run, ski, play tag with my kids and laugh without fear of an attack.