Nick and Jeni Busta

Nick and Jeni Busta are high school sweethearts who have been blessed in marriage for over 16 ½ years. When Jeni tells Nick she loves him, she says “I love you with all of my ½ heart”… because medically speaking, it’s true.

Jeni was born in 1985 with a complex heart condition called Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome, or HLHS. Basically, her left ventricle (the chamber that pumps blood throughout the body) never formed in utero, and never will develop. She is one of the oldest in the world with her condition and has undergone 2 major open-heart surgeries (the Norwood and the Fontan) and received a pacemaker when she was 3 years old. Over the years, she has had 6 pacemaker replacements, several heart ablations, and multiple catheterizations to continue to manage her incredibly unique heart condition.

In August 2022, Jeni underwent a procedure to replace her 34-year-old pacemaker leads (wires). The surgery overall was a success, but unfortunately, her phrenic nerve was damaged, permanently paralyzing her left diaphragm and squeezing her left lung shut. This caused a myriad of side effects, including insomnia and advanced fluid retention in the belly, a key sign of heart failure. Six weeks later, while still recovering, her loving father unexpectedly passed away, and she almost lost her mother to illness. Her emotional trauma and grief severely impacted her ability to heal. To open her left lung and hopefully reverse the heart failure, in December 2023 Jeni underwent a diaphragm plication surgery, where the left diaphragm was tied down to her abdominal muscles. The surgery went well, and Jeni got to go home from the hospital 14 days later, but the recovery is very much ongoing. Four months later, Jeni struggles with severe acid reflux and her pain management/energy levels vary widely from day to day.

Her husband, Nick, is the sole income-earner for the home, joyfully working as a high school history teacher at a private Christian school. While his job is truly a gift, the workload of a teacher makes it difficult for him to care for all Jeni’s needs each day. As they are a single income home, they struggle financially with paying Jeni’s medical bills, which have increased dramatically in these last 2 years.

Amid it all, God has ALWAYS been faithful in providing for them, but the Bustas know He uses the church worldwide to provide for the needs of His children. Any and all help would be greatly appreciated, and they are grateful for however you can provide. May the Lord bless you abundantly! Soli Deo Gloria!

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