The Exciting Day Arrived!
For some reason, I wanted to keep the whole process hushed. I told my parents and one of my brothers. I think Michael’s siblings knew as well. I didn’t want this story to be about me or what I was doing. I was grateful for the opportunity to hopefully help save someone’s life. I wanted to get in and out, rest for the weekend, and go back to work like nothing happened. It was a special, treasured story to me.
I had to tell my boss so that I could go to the pre-screening appointment, make a couple phone calls at work, and have time off for and after the donation. He eventually had me share with the staff the day I was leaving. I was nervous and embarrassed. I didn’t want to share, but I was grateful for their prayers. It also reminded me that this story wasn’t mine nor was it about me. I didn’t want to be seen as a hero or anything. It’s just something special I wanted to do.
Well, the day came for Michael and I to head to Hamilton. We were so excited! We wanted to celebrate, so we decided to drive up the night before and make a date out of it. We went to a restaurant and enjoyed a delicious rib dinner. Then we went back to the hotel and went for a swim in their pool. It was relaxing and special. We had time to reflect on all that God had done, to look forward to the donation, and to see that we were privileged to be a part of a bigger story. I had a snack and shower that night, and we went to bed with peace filling our hearts.
We slept in a bit that morning since I didn’t need to be at the hospital until 12:00 pm. Since I couldn’t eat or drink anything past midnight, I decided it would be a great opportunity to fast and pray over the whole situation.
I had recently read about the Spirit in Moses being divided between the 70 elders of Israel. I didn’t know much about the recipient other than he/she was younger, maybe a chid or teenager. So, I prayed that the Spirit that lived in me would flow into the recipient and that he or she would come to know the Lord. I prayed for all the medical staff involved, that they would see the Lord at work as well. My parents sent encouraging texts and Scripture that morning.
The coordinator that was working with me had mentioned that I could write a card or something to the recipient prior to the donation. I thought about doing it, but every time I sat down to write, I had nothing. I didn’t know what to say. But that morning it came to me. I shared my heart with the recipient. How I prayed for total healing for him/her, and not only healing but be gifted with an abundant life. Since I hadn’t planned on actually writing anything, I wrote it on a piece of paper from my notebook. I didn’t have an envelope or anything, so I took just the paper with me unsealed.
I couldn’t contain my excitement when we arrived at the hospital. It was the first time I would go into surgery with a beaming smile across my face. Everyone was so sweet. My nurse coordinator, Samantha, was wonderful! We were all very excited for this moment. I asked Samantha if I could give her the note to send with my donation for the recipient. She told me she would take care of it, to which I was very grateful.
They rechecked my vitals, and then sent me down to the surgical floor where they prepped me for surgery. Thankfully, the Lord seemed to have filled my stomach, so I didn’t feel hungry all day, which to those who know me well, is so unlike me.
The nurses had to take 14 vials of blood to do a bunch of testing with. I was wondering what was going to be left for the donation after all of that!
They finally got the IV started in me around 1:00 pm. Then we sat around and waited for them to take me into the Operating Room around 3:00 pm. In the meantime, Michael and I played cribbage, chatted with nurses and patients, and hung out. It was certainly a favoured day for me. For those who know the game cribbage, I double skunked him that day!
A nurse came and got me and we walked to the OR together. He had looked at my profile and noticed that I mentioned I had gone on some missions’ trips. We started into a really cool discussion about it until we arrived to the room.
The OR was quite full. They had two doctors, ten nurses, and the anesthesiologist waiting for me. The doctor introduced me to everyone and explained how everything was going to work again. They were going to insert five little holes into the lower hip area of my back and extract the bone marrow. The holes would be so tiny that I wouldn’t even need stitches.
I got on the table, they gave me the anesthetic and off to sleep I went.
To be continued…