A Kidney for Life

Standing in a crowded hospital I watched as doctors wheeled my father away to surgery.  They were not optimistic, he probably wouldn’t make it through they said…..and as my father slowly dissappeared down a long corridor, I found myself praying to God that he would be okay.  I prayed for the miracle that would save his life, as tears streamed down my face I prayed that in a situation which seemed so hopeless, I could do something to save him.  That surgery was for an emergency quadruple bypass.  Our miracle came, and he survived, however shortly after he came home, his kidneys began to fail, and then I knew that God had heard me, and there was something I could do to save my father.

God brought my father through his heart surgery, and now it was my turn to help him.  From that moment I knew that I would be giving my father a kidney.  All the tests and the waiting didn’t waver my belief that I would be able to do something this time, this time I could help him.  On November 23, 2006 at 7:30 in the morning, I did just that.  My husband followed me up to the OR, until they told him it was time, they gave me an IV, and the next thing I remember was waking up and feeling lots of pain.  They gave me some wonderful drugs and that took care of it.  I spent the rest of the day in and out of sleep, lots of people came to see me and I was so thankful that they were there to support me.  After a rough couple of days, getting up and walking around, they let me go home, and a few days after that Dad came home.

It’s now exactly 2 weeks later and Dad and I are both doing great. I can’t imagine a better gift to have given someone who means the world to me.  I have my father back, and he has his life back.  I thank God for blessing us in such a way that we are able to help others by giving the gift of organ donation.  I am forever grateful to have my father back and I will never forget the miracle God has blessed us with.   I have documented my experience so far in a blog.

The experience has been amazing and although it was not pain free, it was worth every minute of it just to see my father enjoying life.  No more dialysis, no more fistulas or buttonholes, just living, that’s what he’s doing now, just living.

I encourage anyone who is thinking of donating, to go for it!  There’s no better feeling than knowing you helped make someone else’s life better.

~Amanda West