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Young Cleveland man discharged from hospital after 561 days

Jacque Causey finally home after heart transplant
Posted at 4:22 PM, Jul 28, 2016
Just a few weeks shy of his 21st birthday, a young Cleveland man is getting a gift that can't be bought or wrapped. It's something quite simple -- and many of us might take it for granted.
 
Thursday night, Jacque Causey will lay his head down on a pillow and fall asleep in his own bedroom. Up until now, he's been trying to catch some ZZZ's in the pediatric unit at the Cleveland Clinic where he's been a patient for a very long time.
 
It was not your typical patient discharge at the Cleveland Clinic, bubbles flying through the air and music blasting, but there are 561 reasons why this particular send off was so special.
 
"I've been waiting for this for a long time and it's finally here," said Jacque Causey. "I had no choice but to just stick it out."
 
That's the number of days Causey spent at Cleveland Clinic Children's.
 
"My heart was just sick," said Causey. "It was stiff."
 
Inside the clinic is where Causey waited for a new heart, and after 540 days he went under the knife for a second time on July 6.
 
"To me it felt like it came kind of quick because I was expecting another year or something like that," said Causey.
 
Causey was 12 when doctors performed his first heart transplant after diagnosing him with cardiomyopathy at the age of two.
 
"I got a real good heart, so hopefully this heart can last a very long time," said Causey.
 
Keeping a positive attitude is what Causey says helped him push through. The doctors and nurses also played a big role in helping the young man get to this moment.
 
"I want them to know how special they made me feel," said Causey. "It's like family here and I'm pretty sure it's going to be like that for a real long time."
 
Despite waging his own battle, Causey took time to mentor younger pediatric patients. He would play video games with them to help take their minds of their illnesses.
 
As for what's next? Causey is going back to school to be a vet tech and plans on getting a car. He turns 21 on August 21.
 
While cleaning up his room Thursday afternoon, nurses found a message from inside a fortune cookie. It read: "The difference between the impossible and the possible lies in a person's determination."