Friday, August 27, 2010

Transplant Day: The Waiting

So...months of waiting and anticipation and I awoke this morning and felt....well, anxious...but really really good. The hardest part about today won't be the side effects, though there are some. The hardest part about today is the anxiety of waiting. (Ativan is a wonder drug, FYI)

There are so many things to be said and felt right now that there hardly seem to be enough words or time to say and feel them. My mind goes to my donor who, as I type, is undergoing the collection procedure. Yes, it will be painful for him. My god, I've had four bone marrow biopsies and those are nothing compared to what he is feeling (um, one hundred holes in his pelvis, fifty on each side, someone give that guy an ice cold beer when he wakes up!). This man does not know me. He has never met me (though he will one day). He knows nothing about me other than my age and sex. He got a phone call one day and said "Yes." Radical. Acceptance. All. The. Way. This man has saved my life. What do you say to that? Thanks doesn't cut it, it just doesn't. Seriously, it's almost hard to wrap my mind around it without having a panic attack about how I'm supposed to feel. The doctors say that it's very anticlimactic, they're right of course, but for me it's like a rumbling in the distance. I reminded my doctor this morning that it may be anticlimactic for the them, the care team, no heroic surgery just an IV drip, but for me, the patient, it's life changing. It's huge. Just an IV drip that saves my life and changes things forever. It represents so much. Freedom. Health. Wellness. A future. How is this anticlimactic? Deep down I think they know it's a big deal, but understand how anxious the patient is. It's hard to tell what the next few days, weeks and months will feel like. If you ask me (and duh, why wouldn't you), I'm going to be fine.

The care here is phenominal, that much I am sure. All along the way this week there have been people in and out of my room with things to offer. Young adult group, music therapy, fresh baked chocolate cookies (though I couldn't stomach it, the gesture was fabulous), a chaplain offing to bless my cells (Yes please!), name it, they came in. It's wonderful, honestly it is. You feel well cared for and watched closely. Comforted when you need it and (maybe not) left alone when you need it. I want you all to know that on the wall, opposite from my bed, I have all of your cards hung. Your love surrounds and protects and I am SO GRATEFUL for it. My heart is full.

For now, I'm taking Ativan (I feel like I'm going to jump out of my skin with anticipation!) and trying to pass the time by writing to my donor and walking a bit. They just came in as I was typing to say that the cells won't get here until later this evening and will probably start the infusion around 8 or 9. Ah, well, a good night's sleep to be had I believe. Dad flew in last night and came by this morning to say hello. Thanks Dad:)

Will post as soon as the cells get here! Thank you for the texts and facebook posts. I can feel you here with me:)

Much love!


  1. Best of luck Laura and you are so right what a radical dude your donor is:-) I am anxious with anticipation as well and can only imagine what you are feeling! I am so glad your Dad got there. Sending my love and prayers from Philly:-) Be Strong,Believe and HOPE! NEW BEGINNINGS!!!! XOXO
    Love ya! Christie

  2. HAPPY BIRTHDAY! love the idea of your donor having an ice cold beer when all is said and done. ray had a big piece of chocolate cake! haha! either way ... they deserve the world. and you deserve every bit of love, health, comfort, happiness, and sunshine coming your way! xoxoxoxoxo

  3. God bless that donor, that's all i can say. i bet you can't wait to know more, to know him, to see this amazing soul. (i so didn't know about the 100 holes, EEP!) will keep checking back! hang in!


  4. Yeah, that's catching. I've been on edge and distracted all day. As I said to your Mom, this is a miraculous process. It really is. The blessing of the cells is a wonderful ritual, a wonderful way to be silent and give thanks. So respectful. Oh, as someone said to me today, breathe out longer than you breathe in and do it slowly :-) Love, Chris

  5. If your donor ever finds himself short on hugs, I know a few people who'd like to give him one or a MILLION. Love you, dearie! Such a big night ahead. Happy Birthday. It's just... awesome.

    And I don't think I told you, but I'm going to the yoga practice later. I'm sure I'll be injured by the end of the night. I think Maggie and I are planning to sit in the way back. I hope this image gives you a belly laugh, perhaps you'll even spit out your grilled cheese. :P

  6. om-ing it up for you .
    Heres to the sweetness of your donor to the sweetness of you.<3

  7. Sending all good juju to Houston to you and your donor!! God Bless his soul.

  8. It's the day we have all been waiting for. Exciting, nerve racking, whatever else. It's going to be 100% effective. Happy second, first birthday sweetie. Nan