Moments in Time ~ Week of Growth and Awakening


Five years ago yesterday, Saturday, May 19th was my first full day out of the ICU. I was on a regular nursing floor and in a semi-private room. It was not all fun and games, but it was a HUGE step.

I still remember feeling like I was surrounded by angels, that nothing was going to hurt me. I had this inner sense of comfort that all would be well.

Over that next week I would grow, I would learn, I’d have a few setbacks, I’d be emotional, I’d laugh, I’d cry and more importantly at the time, I found a huge dose of HOPE!

This lyric sums up a lot about that week ……..

” ….. had to learn, how to bend without the world caving in, I had to learn what I got, and what I’m not, And who I am.” ~ Jason Mraz – I Won’t Give Up

Wow did I have to learn a lot in this week. Had to learn a dozen medications, what they did and when I needed to take them, including two self-administered injections. Had to learn how to walk again as my legs had turned into rubber bands over the past 3 weeks. I started to study the “heart transplant bible” … a notebook that I was given with all of the “do’s and don’ts”, the rules, what to do and when to do it …….  I was OK with the heart transplant, but my emotions were running amuck at times.

I was able to laugh and cry simply because of the three roommates I was {NOT} blessed to have that week.

I had to learn to take 2 steps forward and expect a step backwards every once in a while.

And I also got to meet HOPE face to face when a number of volunteers (heart transplant recipients) stopped by to chat with me. The first gentleman, who ultimately became my mentor, was, at that time, a 19 year heart transplant survivor. After meeting him, I realized that he had given me a HUGE dose of HOPE, plus some drive and the determination to get back to a (somewhat) normal life.

My surgeon also stopped by to see me and gave me a little philosophical talk ~ After kidding me because “ER” was on the TV when we came to see me, he basically said that I was a walking, talking miracle. That, by rights, I shouldn’t even be here, shouldn’t be alive. For someone to code as many times as I did, to get listed and transplanted in such an extremely short period of time that it was like winning the lottery twice in one week. He also said that there was some reason, as he pointed skyward, for me to still be here ….. and that it was up to me to go home, heal and find that reason.

I was also able to start communicating with some other friends & coworkers ……. I can vividly remember a couple of calls and text messages I sent or made, and how they accepted on the other end.

I also began my daily thoughts and prayers in regard to my donor and my donor’s family. At this point I was heavily in the “Why Me?” mode …… why was I a survivor, why did someone else have to die, why, why, why? Each and every day since, my donor is in my prayers, in my thoughts …..

And, as always, I thank GOD, I am happy to be alive!!!!

About DAP

I am a heart transplant recipient and these are my stories and thoughts. My desire is to assist others pre or post heart transplant in anyway possible. Please feel free to contact me if you have a question.
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1 Response to Moments in Time ~ Week of Growth and Awakening

  1. Congratulations for this wonderful milestone! Yours is a story of hope indeed! I’m so glad that you’re using your experience to plant hope and inspiration in the lives of so many. Take care. God bless you. Keep smiling and many hugs from far away Finland! Sharon

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