My Family's Personal Experience With Donor Transplant

My Familys Personal Experience With Donor Transplant

I'm sharing this story because this is a subject very near and dear to my heart....

And because, April is National Donate Life Month.

My Familys Personal Experience With Donor Transplant

The Diagnosis

My second daughter (now 22) was barely 2 years old when My husband's Doctor's office called asking for him.

When I told her he was at work she said it was imperative she speak to him right away, so I gave her his work number. She called back asking if I was sure he was at work because he hadn't picked up the call. I told her he gets very busy as he's the only one in that department and to call back. The warning bells were going off this was no normal call, so when hubby came home, asked if doctor's office was able to reach him and what it was about. He said it was to remind him of an appointment. πŸ™„(No it wasn't)

Two days later, he dropped the bomb that I had to take him to the hospital, he was being admitted to the hospital to have a chest catheter put in to start dialysis immediately as he was in kidney renal failure. πŸ˜₯

The chest catheter was temporary, until they could put in a fistula as my husband now needed dialysis three times a week each session 4 hours.

Our whole world seemed to change overnight. It became a very scary stressful time in our lives....

My Familys Personal Experience With Donor Transplant

The Wait

My husband was put on a transplant list. But there are many people waiting for transplants. We attended transplant classes that walk you through everything from being on the list, donor matches, what to expect if you receive a transplant, how it affects the donor and the recipient.

In the meantime, on top of the 3 times weekly dialysis, there were also weekly trips to the hospital for labs and many doctor's appointments.

Although dialysis was keeping my husband alive, the longer he was on it, the weaker he was becoming. It was so hard to see the strong healthy man my husband was become so tired and weak and sick and in pain. But he handled it with true strength. As sick as he was he still tried to do things with our children and retain a somewhat normal life. He actually switched his dialysis time to 4:30 in the morning so he could be home by 9/9:30 and sleep it off so he could feel somewhat better by the time the girls came home from school .. This went on for 5 years Until... .

My Familys Personal Experience With Donor Transplant

The Call

It was 2-3 in the morning when the phone rang.( I almost didn't answer because some drunk guy used to mistake our number with what I assume was this guy's booty call chick lol-he even once tried saying "well you sound cute"πŸ€¦πŸ»β€β™€οΈ)

Half asleep I answered and they said it was the transplant clinic and asked for my husband. I woke him, gave him the phone and as my half asleep brain was wondering why they'd be calling about an appointment or anything at that time in the morning, The half awake part thought wait a minute, and then I hear my husband repeating directions where to go and what entrance to come to. And I immediately knew.... He was getting a Kidney!!! Nothing can describe that moment of joy, relief, excitement. But then, the fear also set in as three weeks prior a News Anchor in my city who had received a kidney transplant had died just a year after her transplant from rejection....

It was a mad dash to get the kids up, get them dressed, call my sister-in-law, drop the kids off and get my hubby to the hospital. I was rushing so much I actually dressed in the dark and might of looked similar to this:

My Familys Personal Experience With Donor Transplant

The Transplant

We arrived at the hospital at 4 am. Even though we got the call and we were actually there, that the transplant would happen wasn't set in stone yet. They had to make sure it was an actual match and run other tests. After hours of wait, nervous energy, hope and fear... The decision was made....The transplant WOULD take place...

Random pic-not my husband
Random pic-not my husband

Even being told it would take place, the fear didn't totally subside because due to my husband's heart issues, they said he was at higher risk to complications..... And yes, I started crying... The doctor was so sweet and told me if they didn't think it would be okay, they wouldn't be doing it, but they had to state there was higher risk. Which did alleviate some of my fear..... Although we had been there since 4 am. they didn't actually take him down for surgery until 5-6 pm.

And then it was hours of waiting, pacing, drinking horrible hospital coffee. Thank God my mother was there with/for me through this ordeal as noone from my husband's family was there for him or me.. The hospital actually made a mistake, they were supposed to call the waiting room and tell me he was out of surgery, but she said he had just been taken for surgery... So after not smoking all day, I told my mom if they just started the surgery, I'm going to go out and have a smoke. I barely got outside lit the cigarette, was talking to a woman who's son was in critical condition, when we both froze with fear as there was a surgeon standing at the door looking for someone... And then I noticed it was my mom standing next to him.... My heart dropped and I ran across the parking lot, fearing the worst because if they just started the surgery and the surgeon is looking for me, not good.... But, It was good news because the surgery had just finished, not started... The doctor said the most beautiful words I think I've ever heard "The transplant was successful, everything appears to be working, the new kidney is already producing urine" Again no words can convey the elation, relief that went through me in that moment... It was another hour or so, before me and my mom were able to see my hubby. And even though my husband was not usually one to show emotion or outward affection, he told my mom how much it meant to him she was there and hugged her. I know to this day how much that touched my mom's heart....

The End

Sadly, my husband died 7 years later.

But, thanks to one woman who signed the back of her driver's licence, My husband was given those years he might not of had without receiving that kidney. My children were given more years with their dad. He was given a few years where he felt more like his old normal healthy self before complications from FSGS which started affecting the new kidney, and eventually made the kidney reject and have my husband back on dialysis when he died....

I shared this story to both thank all the people who donate to save lives and so others are aware, when you donate, you're not just saving one life, you're giving that person back to their children, their spouse, their parents, their family. And how important it is to either sign as a donor on your license.

My Familys Personal Experience With Donor Transplant

Or make your family or medical power of attorney aware of your wish to be a donor....

As always, Thank you for reading πŸ’œ


My Family's Personal Experience With Donor Transplant
Add Opinion

Most Helpful Guys

  • TonyMetal___86
    Don't know what to say miss brains muffins other than your take made me feel like living these momentw with you...

    I felt happy and sad at the same moment because miss braims muffins deserves the best, your late husband was a very nice person and there is nothing that can be said because this is god's will, maybe we should be thankful that he was able to receive couple of more years with his family even though we wish if he could of stayed alive till the end with his wife and family ☹

    He's in heaven now and he's the guardian angel of his family, he might have gone physically but he's alive spiritually and i'm sure that he's happy to know how much his wife have loved him and is faithfull to him 🙂

    May he rip...

    If someone can save the other by donation or by helping someone by giving them more years to live then they shouldn't hesitate doing it cause that's what's humanity is all about...
    Is this still revelant?
    • Thank you πŸ’œπŸ’œ

    • Your welcome miss brains muffins...
      There is a sad part in this whole thing that when he was in the hospital, none of his relatives were there for him and that's something very ugly and harsh!

      Believe me sometimes one person can be all and everything and you were that person to him plus your mother...

    • Right! I mean his dad lived in another state at the time and his mom died when he was 18 but he had a brother and sister here, and the dad could of got here if he had really wanted to cuz it was only 7 hour drive and less for a flight. But yes, my mom showed up right before they took him for surgery and stayed with me till after we were allowed a brief visit with him and then came back to my house at midnight and she spent the night here with me till picked up kids next day

    • Show All
  • Floppy2112
    Wow! That is quite a story, I appreciate you sharing that experience. I am not so bold as to share my personal tragedies publically, but I am glad you did. A long time ago, I tried to do a DM with you because I was curious about this story. I knew something really bad had happened to you and I didn't know if you wanted to share it with a bunch of people, but I figured it was worth the ask. It's a very human story. Tragedy and loss, the human experience.
    I am glad you at least got the extra time you did with your husband and I hope you all heal well, which is a lifetime experience, I know.
    I am and have been an organ donor. I don't understand why people don't want to do it, especially when you are not using your organs anymore and you can give life to someone else, at least for a while. Thank you for sharing your experience. You have all my respect and best wishes...
    Is this still revelant?
    • Thanks! And if you've already donated... Mad respect, sir... And been through way worse things than that in life, that I don't share with just anyone... But thank you!!

    • Floppy2112

      Well, it's kind of hard to donate when I am still using my organs. But if you need one, just end me and take what you need!
      You've been through worse than that? I am so sorry. It sounds like you've had a rough life.

    • You can be a life donor with some things, like kidney, bone marrow, even blood or plasma... And they say what doesn't kill you makes you stronger, so I'm either strong or dead woman walking 🀣

    • Show All

Most Helpful Girls

  • ariadneR
    This is so important.
    So I was on the transplant list for my cornea for about a year and a half nearly 2, and I remember when I got that call like it was yesterday.
    I've had my new cornea now for 8 years, and I remember one of the first things I did post surgery was sign the donor card.
    Is this still revelant?
    • That's so great!!! And yes I admit I maybe didn't get the importance till it hit my family, and I've been a registered donor since!

    • ariadneR

      I mean I have eye drops that I have to take for the rest if my life so my body doesn't reject he transplant, but it's really a small price to pay

    • Can it just reject after so many years or no? When my hubby's transplanted kidney started failing, they did say it does happen a lot around the 7 year mark, but then he also had that FSGS that could of affected it as well

    • Show All
  • 19magic
    You loved him very much BB it shows in all your posts about your family how much you still care for him, thanks for sharing hun
    Is this still revelant?

Scroll Down to Read Other Opinions

What Girls & Guys Said

  • Massageman
    BBB- Thanks so much for sharing that painful slice-of-life experience. (virtual hug)
    Not much left to say- thanks for the info. A good kick in my rear- we have to re-do our durable POA's and wills now that the kids are done making families!
    • Thanks! And yes do it right away! My husband had his filled out, but never notarized, one more thing that had to be done the day of the operation cuz he hadn't done it prior

    • I never heard that your donor designation on your driver's license had to be notarized. At least in Oregon we don't have to - I think - because no one ever told me I had to have it done. We just have a "D" restriction on our license which means anatomical Donor. So if you die in a traffic accident they will know to rush you to the hospital for removal of any organs needed. I'm sorry your husband's was
      rejected. Sometimes the anti rejection drugs don't always work. But at least they extended his life a little longer. Not everybody gets that chance.

    • @JuliaStyles medical power of attorney has to be notarized not being a donor

  • WhiteSteve
    So sorry for your loss, but it’s a relative blessing to have gotten those additional 7 years of family memories, especially with your daughter so young at the time🙏 They’ll probably need my brain for some kind of study on lunatics, and my lungs would only be an upgrade to Cheech or Chong, but I’m an organ donor and everything else is up for grabs as long as my death isn’t too fiery👍
    • "They’ll probably need my brain for some kind of study on lunatics, and my lungs would only be an upgrade to Cheech or Chong,🀣🀣🀣
      And yeah I'm a smoker, so ain't nobody gonna want my lungs well probably any of my parts lololol

  • ArrowheadSW
    Good story! Of course sorry for your loss but I'm glad your husband got 7 extra years.

    Interestingly, 7 years seems to be about the average. However I do have a cousin who got a kidney transplant 19 years ago and she is remarkably doing fine. I'd imagine that is pretty unusual though.
    • That's great! And yes, 7 years is about the expectancy, although he had the FSGS that could affect any kidney, why he if would of been put back on list, that would be the last they'd of given him. I know the doctors told him we should have our at the time 17 year old tested as a match, but her wouldn't and I get why. Because that disease could of caused that to reject and he didn't want to waste her kidney... And I get that, I think I'd be the same in that situation even more so now that she's a mother with her own child

  • kingofthellamas
    In the Uk you are assumed to be an organ donor. You opt out of, not into the national organ donation programme. (But I think credits have to go to Spain for that brilliant idea who were first on that way around. Yay for Spain! Another Spanish first! .
  • Jjpayne
    That is an inspiring story! Thank you for sharing it! It makes me wonder about being an organ donor myself 🤔
    • As a living donor? Or cadaver? I'm registered as a donor if anything happens to me... And even donating blood or plasma saves lives

    • Jjpayne

      I'm not sure πŸ€” I'm guessing open to either although I do have a false fear of being harvested if I'm still alive πŸ˜… its clearly unfounded and merely a horror fairy tale but it still has me paranoid so being a living donor probably sounds more attractive to me anyway

  • Meldrum
    I am donating my body to science. Because I'm diabetic, they probably won't take my organs for donation. I'm thinking more of them dissecting me to show med students how certain diseases can affect certain organs.
    • That's very awesome of you πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ’œπŸ’œ

    • Meldrum

      I've pretty much used up the good parts so there's nothing I care to stick in the ground to rot. After they are done with me, let's have a barbeque. Bring your hot dogs and marshmellows.

    • Lololol 🀣

  • Diversity_Hire
    What a beautiful story; it's sad he eventually passed, but that was 7 more years he may not have had. Thank you for posting your story, it's a wonderful example of why I've been an organ donor since I turned 18.
    • Thank you!!! And it's great you're a registered donor πŸ’œπŸ™πŸΌ

    • I've just always figured when I'm dead I won't need them. Besides, I want to be burned and mixed in with potting soil to. E absorbed by a tree. It's going to be great. πŸ˜‚

    • Lol hopefully after you've lived a long life tho πŸ™πŸΌ

    • Show All
  • Lliam
    This breaks my heart. 💔😢❀️❀️❀️ I'm so sorry, bbb.
    And yes, be an organ donor. Save a life.
    • Why be sorry? Life is what it is πŸ€·πŸΌβ€β™€οΈ why get tired of selling people waste it on.. Who pays for the first date, which gender had it worst (we all fucked).. but thanks πŸ€— and thanks for reading β€οΈπŸ€—

    • *stupid not selling lol

  • GoodGuyBreakingBad
    Thank you for sharing this with us, Sorry for your loss of your husband
    yeah being an organ donor is the best thing anyone can be (( Hugs ))
    • πŸ’œπŸ’œπŸ€— thanks! And yes it is... I admit I didn't get how important, till it hit home for me and mine, but registered donor since

  • JosyJosy
    Thanks for sharing, must have been a bit tough to write this down :/
  • bulletbob555
    Yes kidney disease has touched my family as well. My sister has to do the 3 times a week now. My moms was bad and she passed a week ago don't have a diagnosis on why. Its out there and its real.
    • Sorry to hear about your mom πŸ’œπŸ™πŸΌ is your sister on a transplant list? I always felt guilty I didn't get tested to see if I could of been a match for my hubby, but our children were so young at the time, and it's harder on/longer recovery for the person donating the kidney (if living donor) than the person receiving.. And by the time, the first kidney failed... He was diagnosed with FSGS which could of affected any kidney he received and he was so sick at that point, I don't know if they of even done it or he'd if even survived the surgery.. but at least getting the first kidney gave us 7 more years with him...

    • I believe she is on list. Never checked for compatibility either.

    • I hope if she is, she gets the kidney she needs πŸ™πŸΌπŸ™πŸΌ and you have to be pretty healthy to be considered for a donor... I know the doctors suggested to my hubby the second time that maybe have our oldest daughter tested as she was 17 at the time, but with that disease that could affect any kidney they gave him, here refused and in that situation, fully understood and would feel the same if I were in that situation

    • Show All
  • Guido
    You have been through some challenging times. I have been registered as a donor for years. However I hope to live long enough to not be but just in case I'm wrong, somebody else can benefit.
    • That's awesome you are πŸ‘ and yeah, stuck around for awhile πŸ™‚πŸ€— And, I admit when younger I didn't get the importance of checking that box, till it hit so close to home, and realized the impact it can have not just for one, but for many... My hubby received his kidney from a cadaver donor, so her other kidney saved another man that day...

    • *stick

    • Guido

      1 donor can change a lot of lives. Hopefully your post will inspire some people to become donors.

    • Show All
  • douride2
    Thanks for sharing. I have tears running while reading this.
    • Sorry πŸ€— although I teared up writing it 😭 but I think it's important for people to know how much it means, not just to the people that get the organ, but to their families and loved ones

    • douride2

      You have nothing to be sorry about for sharing. I feel honored that you share part of your life with me/us.

    • Aww thank you that tears me up too 🤗

  • Smegskull
    The question is... what do they did with those spare lungs?

    Unrelated question, why does hospital food taste like nothing you find anywhere else?
    • I'm sure her other organs were probably donated a well... They're not even supposed to tell you any info about the donor, but they did, but I just knew about the kidney my hubby got and the other guy cuz overheard sand saw him getting same tests as my hubby...
      To the hospital food some have gotten better with the food lol but yah for the most part, ehh lol

    • @Smegskull Because they don't want you to be a hypochondriac and keep coming back to the hospital for a good meal.

    • @JuliaStyles πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

  • KingdomForAKiss
    I'm so sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing your experience. ❀
  • Thanks for sharing such a personal story. I have signed as a donor of course. For years now. So sorry for your loss. :-(
  • amyismynamee
    It's so important it's set up where u have to donate your organs it should be everyone has to unless they dont want to
    *big teddy bear hug* much love to you my friend. ❀❀❀❀
  • Rob17792
    you're fortunate. my friend nicole passed away last year from kidney failure. her kidney ruptured some blood vessels or something burst in her back. she was on the waiting list for a kidney transplant as well but she never got it. the fucked up part her birthday was yesterday (technically February 29th) but she celebrated it on the 28th. before she died about a month before i kept telling her to find a new dialysis place or get someone else to do it for her if they keep stalling with her appointments. she was only a few years older then me too. i knew her from back in 2002. almost 20 years. she lived in ohio. it's hard to even thinking about without missing her. she had a daughter and grand daughter.
    • I'm sorry for your Loss πŸ™πŸΌπŸ™πŸΌ And yes my hubby was fortunate to get a kidney. At least we had those extra yesterday... And yeah he passed away 2 months before his 47th birthday... It's hard to lose anyone you love but especially when they're still young

    • Rob17792

      thank you and that is so true. it just came as a shock when i found out last year. it's still hard to accept that she's gone

    • I don't think that feeling ever truly goes away... It's been 7 years since he's been gone, and 5 since my best friend did after having a stroke, and it's still hard to accept sometimes

    • Show All
  • TheAfrikan
    Thanks for Sharing this touchy stiry with us Brains n am always around for you dear.
  • jimmy2
    Thank you so much i sm a donor on mu drivers card. I pray this touches others to do the same
    • Thank you! And thank you for Being a registered donor.πŸ’œπŸ’œ

  • MrCreep
    7 years it's a good gift but it's still sad as hell
    • Yes. He was only 46 when he passed. But without that kidney he probably wouldn't of even made it to 40. Why shared the story. I admit when I was younger I didn't give much thought to the importance of being a donor or checking that box on my license till it hit my family. And been a registered donor ever since. And obviously the person needing an organ has it the worst, but it affects their whole family and loved ones.

    • MrCreep

      Ye it's does

    • πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘

  • Jayla2000
    Thank u for sharing.
  • Avicenna
    Incredible saga, Brains. Thanks for sharing.
  • collie22
    thanks for sharing your story
  • msc545
    Very compelling and great mytake - thanks!
  • Anonymous
    Hi @brainsbeforebeauty can i DM you?
    • I'm sorry I don't accept dm's especially from people don't know

    • Anonymous

      @brainsbeforebeauty no worries, thanks!