Today marks the three year anniversary of my liver transplant. It also marks the day that my son would have turned three.
It amazes me just how far I have come- both physically and emotionally:
There was the week long coma I had to recover from with my own realization of what I had just been through. The learning of new medical terms and medications. The month long healing from the operation. Dialysis every week while waiting for my kidneys to start working again. The staples and tubes getting removed. Four months of physical therapy to learn how to walk and feed myself. Bi-weekly blood draws and Prograf level changes. Learning to take care of our son with his own set of disabilities. Being diagnosed with post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Watching our son die and somehow finding the strength and will to carry on. Writing that first letter to the family of my liver donor. The volunteer work with the American Liver Foundation. The willingness to share my story in hopes of helping others. Finishing the sweater that was meant for our son and in doing so, rekindling my love for knitting. Joining the Boba knitting group and meeting Cookie A.. Coping with my Sickle Cell Anemia and its attack on my new liver. Accepting the fact that I could never get my old life back, but must now learn to create a ‘new’ life for myself.
I’ve come a long way, but it has not been a lonely journey. I would not be where I am today without the love and support of my doctors, family and friends. My biggest thanks goes to my husband. He is the person who has allowed me to lean on him so much without complaint or showing any sign of weariness. I always knew he was the love of my life. I just never knew he would become the hero of my life as well. Honey, I love you!
To Cory, my donor, and to all those who have made the decision to become organ/tissue donors- I thank you from the bottom of my heart. Without your selfless act of kindness, I, along with thousands of others would not be here today. Thank you for making the choice to give someone you may never meet, a chance at life.
You are welcome to join me tonight in raising a glass in celebration of my anniversary. May these three years be just a small part of the many years of happiness and good health to come!