Looking to 2011, Reflecting on 2010: Blog Highlights from Ana & Isa

As the new year approaches, Ana & Isa Stenzel eagerly look toward 2011 while reflecting on the trials and triumphs of the past year. Throughout 2010, the Stenzel twins have graciously shared an intimate window into their private lives through their well-nurtured blog. Their voice has come to represent not only a part of the cystic fibrosis community, but also part of the international organ transplant community.

We raise a toast to 2010 with a group of quotes from Ana & Isa’s writings over the past three months. They are filled with honest challenges, joyous accomplishments, and earnest reflections to which that all can relate. And now, from the twins:


From Take Me Home Country Roads by Ana | September 26, 2010

“I’ve decided that one of my favorite things to do in life is road trip with my sister.”

“We got out of our professional clown suits as soon as possible and got dressed into the real Stenzel wear- hiking clothes.”

“We took a few small trails, but of course had no real plan, no map and limited time- classic Stenzel style.”

Ana  & Isa climb Mt. Eddy

From Overdue October Opportunities by Isa | October 17, 2010

“I hope you all have found yourselves breathing deeply and making meaning with your time.”

“I peered at all the people on oxygen, huffing and puffing just moving in slow-motion. Trying so hard to walk on the treadmill, to lift weights, to breathe. And their eyes. Full of desperation, hope, fear. Most were actively listed for transplant.”

“I felt so lucky, to live where I live. And I felt sad for the inequity of access to organs, even in a wealthy community like Jacksonville.”

“I went to Transplant Clinic and was given a clean bill of health. I don’t know why I’m so lucky, living such a normal free life, and just amazed, everyday, amazed.”

Giants Game 27

From Ramblings by Ana | November 5, 2010

“I’m convinced that my compulsive living is because of a sense of urgency, the need to do everything I want while I can, because someday (hopefully not for a long time) I will be in the same shoes as my friends.”

“I’ve expressed my survivor guilt to a few, and they tell me ‘not to feel bad’ as each person has their own story. . . But I just can’t help feel bad- this is the Japanese in me… The other option is to be mad at God , but how can I be?”

Interview 17

From Much-Needed Getaway to Hawaii by Isa | November 16, 2010

“We needed to sit and do nothing but stare at each other and talk about ‘the big picture.’ No, not the film, but the real big picture. It’s rejuvenating for our relationship, for our souls. Yes, I know it’s a luxury.”

“I’m always restless and itching to be active, to do more, to see everything there is to see.”

“As I write this, I am just amazed at how normal my life is. My health has been such a gift, to allow me to describe this dreamlike life that is just a fantasy for many.”

Ana  & Isa climb Mt. Eddy

From A Long Overdue Blog : Wisconsin and Iowa by Ana | December 1, 2010

“Four speeches in three states in six days… That’s the way we thrive, I guess… or it was just coincidence? Ready, set, go!”

“Enough bitching… in perspective, at least I was able to breathe in the fresh air, with open lungs and my heart beating fast with each step of our Stenzel-style march in the woods.”

“Of course, I had to buy my favorite which I buy on all my road trips- a pecan log and fudge!”

“Next week Trent and I head to our honeymoon, where we will cruise to Costa Rica, Panama, Curacao, Bahamas and Aruba. I’m looking forward to warm weather and an adventure of a lifetime.”

Ana & Trent Wedding

From Through the Years We’ll Always Be Together by Isa | December 17, 2010

“The holidays bring me to a place of sadness more than cheer. I’ve been to multiple parties and have eaten way too much sugar, and have enjoyed being with friends. But I carry a weight around.”

“It is so unfair and sad, and yet so normal, this cycle of life, this transition from gain to loss, gain to loss that happens in the transplant world and in the real world too.”

“And today, December 17, 2010, marks the 20th year that my childhood best friend Karen died of CF. . . All that mattered to me when I was a teenager was that I was truly loved and understood by one friend, and she provided that for 8 years.”

Interview 7

Happy Holidays and Best Wishes for the New Year from the entire team here at THE POWER OF TWO!

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