When I was in 1st and 2nd grade I had a tutor when I was in the hospital. I’d make sure that I’d do my homework and my mom would send it in. So I always had somebody there to help me with my schoolwork.


Bridget, 26


Fun when you have visitors
It’s not that fun when nobody is here, but it is fun sometimes when you have visitors.

Lucy, 7


I was out of school for a week
I’ve been hospitalized many times for my asthma, but the only time I had to miss school was during my junior year of high school, in which I was out for a week. I had so much work to do to catch up, and everyone knew I was absent. It was hard to catch up, because I was so sick while I was there that I couldn’t do work in the hospital and had twice as much to do when I got home.

Michelle, 22


The hospital was almost like my second home
When I was younger, my asthma was not under control. I would take different medications, and the doctors would test me on different things. I would go into the hospital maybe four or five times a year. It was scary, but I got used to it– it was almost like my second home! I actually had an assigned nurse at the hospital. My longest stay in the hospital was probably a month. That was my life–I was in and out of the hospital until high school. As I got older I had a better understanding of what was happening, but when I was younger I didn’t really understand what was going on….I’d be upset and feel frustrated because I was missing school, getting behind in classes. My parents, though, made sure that each one of my teachers knew that I had this disease and so they would send me my homework. The classes would make me cards. In some ways it was nice because I knew that people cared and they were very understanding. But it sucked because even though my parents would come visit me, they had to work, so I was alone sometimes. And then having to catch up with schoolwork… it was just difficult.

Bridget, 26


Scared every time I got an asthma attack
When I was a kid I was scared every time I got an asthma attack. You can’t breathe. It’s scary. I’d start to feel better once we got to the hospital though. As I got into elementary school it was almost like a routine. I knew if I caught a cold, my asthma would get/be bad, almost to the point where I would end up preparing myself to go to the hospital. I would get there and everybody would know me.

Bridget, 26