Jack’s and Jon’s Story

Here is Jack’s and my story.
If you have any questions feel free to email me: jonaplin@gmail.com

Oct 2, 2014. New life. Live Liver Transplant. Jack Rego and Jon Aplin
This is how it began. The ending has not been written yet.

It began April 2014.
The Sunday before Gabrielle and the worship team had been rehearsing. When they where finished, Nancy was talking with Jack about his Liver. She asked him what he needed. Jack told her and Gabrielle.
Later that evening Gabrielle told me the story. I didn’t give it much thought the rest of the night or following week.
However, when Sunday came God had a different plan. After service I went over to Jack to talk to his would his Liver.
This is our conversion,
Me, Jack I hear you need a new Liver.
Jack, Yes I do.
Me, So tell me about it. What has to happen?
Jack, I’m on a waiting list for a cadaver liver. However, I would have to get very very sick before I get to the top of the list. Most people don’t get a liver in time.
Me, Is there anything else that can be done.
Jack, Yes, I could get a liver from a Live Donor.
Me, What do you mean by that?
Jack, That is where a person donates a part of their liver to me. I would need to ask someone to do that and I don’t feel comfortable asking. That is very hard to do.
Me, Is there anyone in our family that can do that?
Jack, My son tried but he doesn’t qualify.
Me, What are the qualifications?
Jack, First they would have to be the same blood type.
Me, What is your blood type?
Jack, O+
Me, Just as I said, “So is mine” {Now here is where God steps in} the pressure on my head went up, and there was a grip on my heart. I tried to speak more
but it was like a “hand” covered my mouth. I put my hand on Jack’s shoulder. I held it there for a minute, then got up and left.

God made it very clear he wants me to do this so for the next week I had a wrestling match with God.
I asked, Why?
God said, Because I told you to.
But God can’t someone else do this?
But God… No more Buts. OK I’ll do as you have me do.

That is when things started to change on my life. Nothing very big. Just small things.
Like a 40 year coffee habit stopped the very next morning. No head aches or withdrawals. Just stopped.

I talked with Gabrielle about this. It took a little time for her to come around. God helped her with that.
I told my family. Jolene cried and my dad was worried.

Gabrielle and I talked with Pastor Bill.
He asked Gabrielle how she felt about it. She told him she was fearful but 100% supportive.

So we are now at church again. April 27, 2014.
After services I called Gabrielle, Jack and Denise into the kid’s room.
Jack and Gabrielle went into the room first so they sat on the couch.
Denise sat on the rocker, more comfortable for her.
All that was left for me was the floor or the little kid’s chair. I sat in the chair. The three of them laughed at me. The chair has arms and I fit.
{Note I tell that to someone else and they brought to my attention about the place of humility I was put in. My head below all of theirs.}

Anyway, I told them, Yes I would do this. I explained this is what God wants me to do. And we would go forward until “They” the doctors say “NO”.

Denise cried, Jack laid his head back, I could see the impact this had on him, an answer to prayer, {sometimes we hear people praying for something and don’t really think that “WE” could be their answer to prayer} and Gabrielle just smiled.

Jack gave me the website address for UCSF so I could fill out the online application to get things started.

May 20, 2014
My first of many tests.
Heart stress
Sleep study

Sept. 19, 2014: Pre-transplant infectious disease screening panel.

It took about 6 months to get to this day.

Oct 1, 2014
Checked into the hospital.
Weight = 148.6

Oct 2, 2014
Surgery day.
0615 They are here to take me to OR.
0730 I’m taken into OR.
0915 Jack goes into OR.
1051 Jack’s surgery has started.
1100 Update, I’m doing good.
1307 Jack’s new Liver is on it’s way to him now. I should be back in my room about 1500.
1345 Gabrielle talked with Dr. Asher. Dr. Asher said, “Jon must really love his friend to donate such a large chunk of liver.” Gabrielle said, “Oh yes he does!”
1616 I’m back in my room. Gabrielle says in my journal that I’m very groggy.
1841 Denise writes in my journal, “Thank you Jon, for saving my husband’s life. You have given him a new birthday…”
1900 Jon Rego writes, “No words can explain the man that you are. It’s amazing that my dad has a friend like you in his life.  You are an incredible godly man, and I want to thank you with all my heart. Such a relief to have my pops made whole again.  You are so strong and a unbelievable man. I’m at a loss of words trying to tell you how much this means to me, my family, my dad. I love you.  Thank you a thousand times.”

Oct 3, 2014
1100 I got up and went to see Jack in ICU. I gave him his Teddy bear. He loves his bear. We spend about 45 minutes together. We talked about fishing, his truck and my RxR.
1245 Jim and Sonia came by for a visit. Was nice to see them.

Oct. 4, 20014
Madelyn writes, “Jon I’m so glad we made it down to see you and Jack! I would like to thank you from the bottom of my heart for doing this for Jack.
This gives him a future to see all of his children grow and grandchildren. You don’t know how much that means to me. We love you.”

Oct. 5, 2014
Bill and Nancy came for a visit. Nancy writes in part, “The church is rejoicing with you two over the great success of your and Jack’s liver transplant… Lou says, “You’re blood brothers now!””
Bill writes, “Thank you for hearing and obeying God in this service to Jack.”
1800 Went to see Jack in ICU. He is looking really good. Eyes are white and skin color is returning to normal. He is getting moved to Rm 973Long.

9Long x 12 laps = 1 mile
I did 43 laps = 3.6 miles

Oct 9, 2014
Discharge day.
Weight = 147.6 Difference between check in and now is 1lb. The amount of liver removed.
{{I was talking with Jack the other day. I asked him if he could feel the new liver? He said, “Yes.” I asked him what it felt like? He said, “It feels like new life.”}}

Sometime in the afternoon.. Home Sweet Home.

Jack and I were in the hospital 7 days.

All the doctors and nurses at UCSF were wonderful. I was treated with so much love and respect. They called me Mr. Aplin so much I almost forgot my first name.
The doctors and nurses all said it was a joy to take care of me.
Here are few things they had to say:
Fabulous working with you.
Great first day.
Most courageous gift.
Pleasure taking care of you.
You’re a hero.
You are the man. {Dr. Asher}
Awesome thing for your friend.
Truly inspiring.
Extraordinary thing for your friend.
Gift of life.
Amazing person.
Excellent donor.
Loved by all the staff on 9LONG. You’re truly our silent hero.

Dec 5, 2014
Jack and I are getting better and stronger every day. Thank you God.