It Hurts So Bad!
My first thought once I woke up from the anesthesia was that some poor woman was screaming and that someone should be helping her. Then I realized that poor woman was ME! I don’t know how many people know this about me but I have a high threshold for pain. I’ve never been a screamer (even in labor). But along with that, I tend to think of medical procedures like the “before & after pictures” that you see on television. I don’t really think of the pain associated with the procedure. So even with the kidney transplant surgery all I could think about was going in and coming out with a new kidney.
Screaming…loudly. Suddenly there were nurses surrounding me telling me that they were going to help me – did I scream, “Help me?” They began taking my vitals and asked me to rate my pain on a scale of 0-10. I (again with the screaming) replied, “250.”
At that point, pain medication was given through the IV and almost immediately the pain started to subside. I stopped screaming and felt embarrassed – until the man in the bed next to me woke from his anesthesia and screamed much louder than I had.
Being in the surgical recovery room, which is a huge room full of people who just had transplants or just donated their organs. There were husbands donating kidneys to wives and vice versa. There was a son donating to his mother; friends donating to friends, strangers donating to strangers and just like in my case, patients getting cadaver kidneys.
To be amongst that made me forget myself for a bit. There was every demographic you could imagine in that room. I wish that everyone could have gotten a glimpse of the amazing things that were happening…it would change your life.
Some of you have commented how you’ve cried when you’ve read my blog…well this is the part where I’m crying as I’m writing this. I once read a book called, “You Were Born For This.” (Bruce Wilkinson). The gist of the book is that miracles happen and can happen every day because God works through people to make them happen. The author says that people need to know that they are capable of assisting God when it comes to making a miracle happen.
While in the recovery room, I wasn’t only a part of that; I was in the middle of it too. There were miracles all around me. I know there will be people who will read that line and think, “how can those be miracles, everything was planned and scheduled, etc” But just to let you know something that I rarely talk about – when I first found out that my kidneys were failing and needed dialysis, I approached a few people about being tested to see if we would be a match. I knew that it was a scary subject for some people so all I asked for first was the blood type testing. I had no hard feelings against the people who said no. I actually felt like it wasn’t supposed to work out in that way.
I became a part of a miracle in another way and I really believe it was supposed to work out the way it did – so that I could witness what I did in that recovery room full of people who worked with God to help people who needed it. I can’t even tell you how many people were in that recovery room but there were many. Just imagine the lives that were being saved and changed. It overwhelmed me.
It didn’t take long before my guys were able to come back and visit me. The smiles on their faces were the biggest ones I’ve ever seen. Doug told me that the doctor said the kidney started working as soon as they put it in. More smiles. The nurses also told me that I was doing extremely well. And I felt good. I did have a little pain pump thing that released medicine every six minutes – but I really did feel good.
The hospital was absolutely packed that day and there were no rooms available. Which meant that I spent 12 hours in recovery until they found me a bed. I was tired and I was worried about Doug, Justin and Julian because they had been there about 20 hours and I wanted them to go and get some sleep. They finally found a bed for me and the boys stayed another hour and then went home.
After they left I couldn’t fall asleep. I had so many thoughts rushing through my brain. “It really happened. Thank you God. What happens to me now? I’m so happy but I’m scared. I wonder why I have this needle in my neck? Someone died and that’s how I got this kidney.”
I know all my thoughts and fears were normal but how are you supposed to feel when you get what you’ve wanted for so long?
To be continued…