On March 18 last year I remember feeling very nervous. It wasn’t to do with the fact that I had been in an all-day management meeting. Nor was it to do with the fact that I would be having surgery next day.
It was about whether Luis would finally be able to have his transplant.
We had been waiting 10 months, having been told the process for a live donor would take no more than 6 months. There had been a previous attempt at the transplant exactly a month before – aborted at 10.45pm the night before when Luis had suddenly developed liver problems.
The successive delays had led to new complications and infections linked to dialysis – which in turn caused further delays. Luis now had a heart problem – he had an unresolved blood clot on one side, and a metallic stent in the other.
The journey to transplant day had been a rollercoaster ride. At one point we had been told there might never be a transplant – unexplained antibodies suggested his body would automatically reject any new organ. At last, it was decided to push ahead and try – but not before the words ‘HIGH RISK’ had been written in large letters in Luis’ surgical file.
I bade my colleagues farewell – one of them gave me an unexpectedly heart-felt hug – and made my way by bus to Great Ormond Street Hospital to join Luis and Siobhan. The three of us had dinner together in Luis’ hospital room before Siobhan left so Luis and me could spend the evening together, just the two of us.
Luis and me squeezed into his bed and settled down to an evening of Scooby Doo DVDs, which we watched until late into the night. Then we read for a while until Luis fell asleep. I stayed in his bed with him.
I set my alarm for 5am to make sure I didn’t miss the hospital transport that would collect me and take me to Guy’s Hospital. Eventually, I fell asleep.
So scary to read let alone have to deal with the situation. A year has gone by and all of you have each been on a journey that you dealt with in an amazing way and you are all an inspiration to the rest of us. Congratulations on your “anniversary” and best wishes to a great family.
Adele, Mark and Morganxxxxxxxxxx