I honestly wasn’t sure I’d make it this far.
I can’t believe today I’m 5 months post-transplant. (Even though I sometimes wish I was more like 5 years post-transplant…)
I look around, grateful for what I have, yet I’m anxiously reaching for what I don’t, the milestones I have yet to reach.
But what glory comes with the win if there was no struggle to achieve it?
My immune system still isn’t strong. I’m still rebuilding the life I laid aside to fight for. Every now and then, I feel a painful stretching sensation in my side and remember it will be months before the muscles are completely healed. The painful memories and atrocious fears still replay in my mind. Dealing with the medical bills is a full-time job. Some of my anti-rejection meds are miserable. I have dreams of trying to talk with the breathing tube in, tracing the newly-stapled incision covering my entire abdomen.
But on the other side, my favorite side…
My liver enzymes are perfect. While not within normal range, my platelets are higher than they’ve ever been. Some of my fears aren’t even concerns anymore. I don’t have liver disease for the first time in 18 years. I’m back at school. I can go out with my friends. I can even get in and out of bed by myself. Five months ago, I couldn’t do that. I don’t have the 20 lbs of fluid I gained during the surgery. I have my appetite back, and I don’t look like a skeleton anymore. I can breathe without a tube going down my trachea. I have been given a gift that has saved my life.
I truly believe in perspective, in consciously choosing to embrace the positive. I believe in honoring the smallest things. Everything is a miracle.
So 5 months may not seem like much time to you, but I know it’s enough time to change a life and then change it again and again. It’s 13,148,719 seconds – 13,148,719 opportunities for something to go painfully wrong or miraculously right.
I don’t think I can say this enough – I am so grateful.