It's been a tough 24 hours.
A friend of mine got his call for Transplant back in September. He had a complicated recovery (didn't alarm me due to my history) and I grew quite close to his partner, chatting to her as often as possible and spending the day with her when I was up for Clinic.
New complications sprang up a few weeks ago - septicaemia and infection in the lungs. With confidence I reminded his partner that I'd taken a very similar track indeed, and a few weeks later after scaring my family (and the team) to pieces, I was back on the mend.
Naive confidence perhaps, as yesterday I got the horribly sad news that he hadn't made it.
This tragedy is not about me in any way shape or form, but this blog is so I'm going to be self-centred on it as is my privilege as the author.
The mixture of emotions swimming round is immense. I have grown pretty close to his lovely partner and imagining what she is going through breaks my heart. It reminds me how lucky A and I are to have celebrated our first wedding anniversary in November. How lucky my family and I are to have celebrated a busy, noisy, rowdy Christmas together. How lucky I am to have just marked my 2nd year anniversary with my new lungs.
And of course, that feeling which always accompanies the loss of someone in a similar position; survivors guilt. The futile but natural ponderings on why I survived and he didn’t. There’s no rhyme or reason, I’m fully aware of that, but it doesn’t stop the questions.
Being a transplant survivor and campaigner, I am self-conditioned to put my faith into transplantation being the answer. Of course it is the answer, well the only possible one, for people such as myself who will otherwise die. But that doesn’t make it foolproof. Transplantation is a risky business; it’s a complex procedure which is why it’s only used when all other avenues have been exhausted. But it offers a hope; the chance of a new chapter with renewed health.
It’s a strange and helpless place I find myself in. When I lose a friend pre-transplant, my answer is to throw myself even harder into campaigning and raising awareness. But this was sadly a transplant which was not a success. A rare but devastatingly hard scenario to face.
In amongst my self-wallowings, my thoughts are with his family, his friends, and his gorgeous wife. And all my warmest wishes go to them during this very sad time.