remarry, Mrs. Armstrong said, the transplant team at Hopkins re-evaluated the situation and decided "I needed a more stable home environment."
Sharon Augustine, transplant coordinator at Hopkins, explained that after surgery "things don't always go 100 percent," and the physical and emotional demands can be enormous.
So Mrs. Armstrong moved into her own apartment. Members of her church wrote to Hopkins to pledge their support. Then her daughter, Lisa, 19, gave up a full college scholarship and moved from Florida to help.
"That young woman has been very impressive," said Dr. Stuart. "Lisa . . . has gone from a regular teen-ager to really take on a lot of sacrifices. She has been a real help to her mom and cheered her incredibly."
Lisa's arrival was enough to get Mrs. Armstrong back on the regional transplant list last month.
But while she was off the list, she read about a successful single-lung transplant at University of Maryland Medical Center -- the first in Maryland. Emphysema patient Gordon West, 51, of Princess Anne received the lung and has since returned to work and to the golf links.
"Please believe me, I'm so happy for him," Mrs. Armstrong said. "But all I could think about was that had I not been taken off that list, I might have been able to get that lung. I didn't have a chance to vie for it."
Now she is back on the list, still waiting. "I'm hanging by a string," she said, but she remains hopeful. "God has always helped me. Maybe someone who reads this will be the one whose loved one can let me live."
If she survives, she hopes to become an advocate for transplant candidates. "If I die, don't be sad for me, because I had my chance," she said. "I just want other people to have the chance I had."