Yesterday marked 5 years since I received that phone call that sent my whole world spinning. The phone call that changed my world, the phone call that gave me hope, the phone call that sent Alan and I Brisbane for 8 weeks, the phone call that allowed me to receive the gift of a donor kidney.
I had been on dialysis for 3 years minus about 3 weeks and had finaly gone on the transplant list in October 2004 after finally getting all my tests done and attending a transplant seminar in Brisbane at the Princess Alexandra hospital. I told the boss people at work that when I got the call I would be away for about 3 months but even as I said it I really didn't think it would happen....
In Dec/Jan I had an overwhelmimg need to pray for the future donor and the family..I didn't know why and still don't know why..but I just did it for days...then the feeling was gone.
About 3 weeks prior to the call I felt God prompting me to buy pyjamas..I eventually did buy A NIGHTIE...I really should have been prepared for the call..a bit like a Mum packing her hospital bag when having a baby..but no I really thought it would be ages away.
Anyway at 3.45 am on 11th Feb I awoke to the phone ringing..Luckily it was not a dialysis night and so I got out to the kitchen and it stopped ringing..then my mobile started ringing..by the time i found that in the kitchen it stopped ringing and the home phone started ringing..I did think wow someone really needs to talk to me..I finally got to the phone while it was still ringing..
phone..Is that Mary Tyson
Phone.. Its dr ???? from the PA hospital Brisbane. We have a kidney for you if you want it.
phone..we have a perfect matched kidney for you..
And so the conversation went. She also gave me heaps of information that included all her telephone numbers..I wrote them all down and then said "why are you giving me this for?" she said just in case you want to check with me about something.. They told me it was a 3 out of 5 quality kidney but it was a perfect match. I would need to be at the PA hospital by 6.30am so they could do testing etc..
O my gosh..panic unreality..etc etc.. Kim was at home at the time and as we ran around Kim came to me and said (very seriously) "Mum you just need to take the essentials...not the hair straightner" so funny.. I said "Kim get the hair straightner"
We ran around and were quickly on our way..neither Alan or I remember the trip..we just arived at thehospital..and then realised hat with daylight saving we were in fact an hour earlier and had heaps more time to get ready..
We were then directed to the radiography dept for x rays and then to the transplant ward..where I had heaps of tests and the waiting wa interminable. I rang Ballina Library at 8.30am as I was supposed to work that day..Finally at around 11.30am Iwas on my way. I remember saying goodbye to Alan and wondering if I would ever see him again..I felt at peace as I knew that if I died I would go straight to Heaven,but I also knew that I wanted to live for my family so much.
I had to wait up outside the theatre for ages..and then it was time..I awoke about 4.30pm and had so many tubes etc coming out of me..including a cathetar..which was passing some urine..but tiny amounts.
I was returned to the ward quite late but Alan was there and I was so happy to see him.
That night wa sone I hope never to have to repeat. The pain (my back was so sore) the tubes the fear (not from God) as I was passing only very small amounts of urine. I had been warned that often you have to drink heaps to keep up with your kidney..mine?? 50 mls...30mls etc every hour. They did obs and bloods all night as well.
The next dat they informed me I needed to dialyise again..Fantastic.. so I did it..put my own needles in and was so sad. A big surprise when Dan, Del and Clare arrived from Canberra..almost blew me away..
I was told I had a sleepy kidney..but gradually over the weeks it got better. I think fear ruled my life at that time. The lady in the bed beside me told me that her first transplant only lasted 6 weeks and I really beleive that put such fear into me.
The next 8 weeks were filled with goodtimes. sad times, angry times and fun times..learning to take so much medication..measuring every wee and every drink for 2 weeks was interesting.