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Alyssa Sandeen Home For Holidays Without Receiving Heart Transplant

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For the past month she's been on life support in the hopes of getting another heart.
So far she didn't that heart transplant but she's celebrating Thanksgiving with her family....

Having your family home for the holidays makes the time special... But for the Sandeen family just having Alyssa alive is something to be thankful for.
Alyssa Sandeen says, "I feel like Christmas is too soon because I've been asleep for a month and I don't even feel like it's thanksgiving."

Alyssa had been sedated and on life support since around Halloween when she was taken to the hospital for chest pains and severe anxiety. Shortly after she collapsed and her heart stopped beating.

"I'm just happy to be alive pretty much," said Alyssa Sandeen.

For past few weeks doctors say her heart was only pumping at 10 percent. They sedated her and had machines breathing for her and pumping her blood. She was quickly moved up the heart donor list, something her family knows well.
Chris Sandeen says, "It was pretty scary for a while thought she was going to need another transplant suddenly she started to improve so prayers answered."

When Alyssa was eight she received a heart transplant and then two years ago her mother donated her Kidney to Alyssa. Being a donor is something the Sandeen's feel strongly about.

"I think everyone should be an organ donor because it saved my life twice and it almost saved it a third time," said Alyssa.

Luckily it doesn't look like she needs that transplant. Right now her heart is pumping blood at about 45 percent, a number that may still seem shockingly low, but doctors say it's good enough.

"She can't run a marathon."

She may not be able to do that but she is building up her appetite for the holidays, after being on a feeding tube for almost three weeks.
Lisa Sandeen says, "She actually had her first pumpkin pie in the hotel. It's the first thing she wanted."

After a night's stay in a hotel in Rochester the Sandeens are together again and they say they're so very thankful for this thanksgiving.

Lisa Sandeen says, "Glad that Alyssa got home on thanksgiving and it's the best thanksgiving we're ever going to have."

Alyssa's homecoming is something that makes this holiday season complete for the Sandeen family.  Alyssa Sandeen says she plans on going back to school once she regains her strength. During her time on life support she lost about 15 pounds and her body was weakened. She will be doing light exercises to rebuild her strength.