Klyn Elsbury was born with the life threatening genetic disease, Cystic Fibrosis. Her lungs are prone to infections, because she naturally produces a thick sticky mucous that she can’t cough out. It has destroyed her pancreas, and requires 30+ pills a day, just to digest food. The stress on her pancreas and years of malnutrition lead to a month-long diabetic coma in 2001 and now she manages diabetes with daily insulin. Last year, she spent over 100 days on IV antibiotics accessed through a port that she had surgically implanted into her chest for immediate vein access.
Despite the realization she may be buried soon, she proved everyone wrong by going to the gym daily and participating in Zumba classes. After one particularly grueling workout, she set a goal of becoming a Zumba Instructor.
She had to live. She had to push herself. If she didn’t, she would die before the life-saving drugs she tried to have access to earlier that year, would be available.
When the drugs came on the market, the price tag of $259,000 she was denied coverage. Using her recruitment background, she cold-called everyone in the industry until eventually, she landed on PBS, ultimately leading to an interview with an Emmy-award winning correspondent of NBC’s Nightly News with Lester Holt.
Once approved, the sky was the limit. From her hospital bed one dreary day, she decided to interview famous people who overcame incredible odds. This was the platform for writing her best-seller: I AM____: The Untold Story of Success.
She then combined her love for recruiting and bringing people together, to co-found Landmark Makers. With her tenacious and powerful presence, she shares how she challenges the narrative about her physical limitations to pursue her passions.
She reminds us all to live authentically, love deeply, and to recognize adversity as an advantage. After all, “Life isn’t measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the number of moments we create, that take our breath away.”