‘They’ve got a kidney for me Mum!’ My son Steve was almost shouting into the phone, he was so excited. My heart missed a beat, as I realised the enormity of his statement. This was the phone call we have all been waiting for. It had finally arrived. What now?
“I am on my way Steve.” I said replacing the receiver and grabbing the car keys in one movement. Then it happened! I started shaking and tears streamed down my cheeks. I knew I could not ‘let go’ now. Time was short. We had to get to the hospital as soon as possible. (Sooner even!) I managed to control my fears, as I got myself ready and within minutes we were heading for the hospital.
I could not help thinking of all the years of watching my son’s health slowly deteriorating. The fatigue: the depression and the hopelessness of kidney failure.
The awful dialysis keeping him alive, but became the monster ruling his life. The restrictions, meaning he could not even play his beloved guitar. How many times had he said, “I can’t go on, Mum.”
How many times had the family rallied and ‘been there’ for him? Helping to keep Steve ‘fighting’ back? Well he did. Now here it was: the phone call we had all prayed for had happened. Steve was on his way to receive the kidney transplant we had almost given up on, because of Steve’s very rare blood group. He had been told it could be a long wait, if ever.
I had taken all the tests for him to have one of my kidneys, but was found to be incompatible. I was heartbroken. Steve had refused to let his young sister donate one of hers, because she was recently widowed and had two young children. Even though it meant life or death to him, Steve could not let her take the risk. Thoughts raced through my mind, as I drove to my son. Yes, I prayed! Prayed, that finally my son would be able to live to enjoy his life, as others did. No longer dependent on the dialysis. I prayed for the kidney donor and the wonderful family who were enabling my son to have the chance of a new life.
When we arrived at the hospital Steve was rushed away for many more tests, and a lecture, as to the side effects. The reliance on anti-rejection drugs for the rest of his life. Then he was taken to the operating theatre, for a minimum of four hours, we were told. It was late evening when we made our way home. Only then did I let the floodgates open, as I sobbed for my son and for the family of the kidney donor. A life lost! A life saved! What wonderful people they are, that in the midst of their own grief they can think of saving another. God Bless them all.
One o’clock in the morning Steve was taken to recovery. The new kidney was functioning, all was working well. I would be visiting him as soon as they allowed me to do so. All of our prayers have been answered. God speed your recovery my son! I love you.