Monday, April 29, 2013

How to Be Semi-Productive

4 Days 'Til Transplant

You know what I thought would be unfair?  Writing out a whole checklist of things that I’m supposed to do before the transplant, then leaving the faithful readers of this blog hanging by not updating you all on what I actually DID.  

  • Cleaning the apartment?  We cleaned the apartment!  And it was no easy task. We entertained Ben’s friends on Friday night, so the morning after we were confronted with a hurricane of beer bottles and leftover salsa.  Don’t worry, I didn’t partake in the drinking. However, I did come up with an awesome drinking game that no one wanted to play.  Ben did me a favor by staying home and cleaning, and even doing laundry for the day, while I attended the family BBQ at my family’s house.  We’ve still got a few more loads to do but the apartment is 75 percent done.

  • Take care of a handful of major wedding things?  We did some wedding things.  My mom purchased my veil for me, which I’m super grateful for. I am running low on wedding funds and that is an understatement.  However, Ben did NOT get his new suit tailored--a casualty from the night of drinking and a day of cleaning.   My final dress fitting is happening Monday (today).  Unfortunately the marriage license is being put on the backburner.  But it’s not exactly like we’re running out of time to get it.  And I was able to make a few lists of projects for various family members and wedding party members.

  • Make arrangements at work?  Arrangements made!  I’ve told my boss about my surgery, I retrieved my FMLA paperwork from my doctor’s office. I still have to set up my out-of-office messages and clean off my desk.

  • Have the hard discussions with Ben?  Sort of.  The conversation pretty much went like this: 

Me:  Hey Ben, remember that paper that I was supposed to sign that gives you power of attorney…or whatever?
Ben:  Yeah?
Me:  Well, I’m basically gonna sign it over to you.
Ben:  Ok.
Me:  Cool.

So, yeah, basically, Ben knows if anything happens to me, he has a say in everything.

The past weekend went by FAST.  Which is always a sign that something big is about to happen.  Monday morning I’m going in for pre-op, which is additional blood tests and a physical tests to make sure I’m still healthy enough for surgery.  At this point, it’s still too early to feel super nervous.  Lately, I’ve just been thinking about:  all the foods I’m going to eat after the transplant; the length of time it will take to recover; if I can leave the hospital after just a few days instead of a week; if I’ll get sick of being at my parents house for a week; what Ben will eat for dinner for a week; what I’ll feel like once I have a new kidney. 

I just feel very fortunate to have this opportunity. Part of me still feels like this is surreal, and sometimes I ask myself, “Why me?” As in, why am I so fortunate that I get a new kidney before the thousands of people on the waiting list.   I’m so excited to be receiving a new lease on life, but at the same time I feel pinch of sadness for the thousands who die each year while waiting for a kidney donation.  I think about the thousands who have been on dialysis for five years. I’ve had kidney disease for 10 years, and been on the waiting list for kidney for six months. 

My dad made this dream of getting a kidney before the wedding a reality.  There are some situations where just throwing money at it isn’t enough.  Sometimes, it takes more. Sometimes it literally takes guts to change someone’s life.

Thank you God for the dads, and thank you God for all the living donors.