Getting Ready for the Hospital
After I hung up the phone with Chad, I turned to my son Justin and he said, “You got a kidney, didn’t you mom.” I couldn’t speak, I just shook my head yes. I can’t tell you how much my son loves me. He has prayed things for me that I didn’t even know he was worried about. He once told me that he prayed that I would only have one dialysis access until I got my kidney – and I’ve only had the one access my entire dialysis time.
Justin sprang into action and asked me what I needed. I started listing off the things Chad told me. I also told him to take the dinner out of the oven and for he and his cousin (Julian) to eat dinner before Doug got home. I then ran upstairs, fully intending to pack a bag. But I felt frozen in place. I was still in shock. I remember falling to my knees and just thanking God over and over again.
I then realized that I had every woman’s nightmare…no clean underwear to pack. For some reason that kind of threw me off and I just stood there in the middle of my bedroom. Justin walked in and asked me what I was doing and I told him that I didn’t know. He picked up my bag and basically told me to “snap out of it.” I only needed one change of clothes so I started throwing things in my bag with one hand and picked up the cordless phone with the other. I called Anne R first, who happened to be on vacation at Hershey Park. I got her voicemail and in between tears and gibberish, told her that I was on my way to Ann Arbor to get my kidney. I then called my other friend Ann, who was at the movies…I got her voicemail too. I started to think, “what’s the deal, the most important thing that’s ever happened to me is happening to me and I’m getting people’s voicemails???” I had better luck with Sue, my aunts and everyone else I called after that.
I was still standing in the middle of my bedroom when Doug walked in with the goofiest smile on his face. For a split second I felt like I was dreaming. I actually felt like I was Dorothy in the “Wizard of Oz” and I thought the room was going to start spinning around. I gave my bag to Doug and sat on the bed. And of course, Justin walks in (again) and says, “Mom, what are you doing?”
As we made our way downstairs, I asked him if he and his cousin had dinner and he told me that he had put the food in individual Tupperware bowls and that he and Julian would eat in the car on the way to the hospital and Doug could eat his once we got there. I have often asked myself where this kid came from.
I still wasn’t ready to go though. I asked the guys how I looked and I started searching for lipstick. Again, Justin said,” mom, you never wear lipstick, let’s go!”
On our way out of the door, my friend Ann and her kids were on the porch. I believe they may have pushed the speed limit to get across town to give me hugs before I got on the road. At that point, the whole cell phone voicemail thing was forgiven.
As we pulled out of the parking lot, it hit me that the next time I walked through my front door, my life would be different. I was going to be different…a new Jackie.
And then we were on our way to get the kidney that I had been waiting 5 years and 7 months for.
To be continued…