Post Number: 9636
|Posted on Thursday, July 09, 2009 - 04:13 pm: ||
I wrote this in 2006 one year after my second double lung transplant at Jackson Memorial Hospital. I remembered many events and decided to write them on paper.
When I met one of my ICU nurses the other day, the first thing she mentioned was this list below. She asked if I took notes because she could not believe that a vented patient would remember so much. I could barely write so how could I take notes? I have a good memory when I focus. What you will read below was written in 2006 a year after my second tx.
Well today I am going to celebrate my morning by visiting the heart and lung transplant support meeting at JMH. Later on in the afternoon I will be stopping by the ICU to give thanks to all the staff. At night I am going out to dinner with my husband for a nice evening.
I wrote this for the staff in the ICU
My Transplant Anniversar
Risa Tx date 7/25/05
Sandra- She was one of the first familiar faces I saw and she was so sweet to me. "We are going to help you get stronger and gain some weight". Now that I am post transplant Sandra is the nurse that I can depend on.
Bridget, I will never forget the night of my call and you were there the next morning comforting me. I remember when you came into the ICU to evaluate me and asked me if I knew where I was and what I went through. That was very helpful.
Julio-He was always there when you needed him. It was nice taking a walk with him and Nimpha. I was determined to make it out of the ICU and they were very encouraging.
Seeing Dr. Panos one year later back visiting the ICU on my anniversary was wonderful.
Lindsey held me up out of bed for the first time from what I remember. I felt safe.
Katie said, "Don't you want to go home?" A light bulb moment.
Dr. Fertel - It is human nature when you are nice, they are nice.
Dr. Pham-Smiling when I walked for the first time.
Dr. Silverman said during my first few walks, "I can see you jogging on the beach again."
Dr. Miller said during my first walk, "You have strong legs." Then months later he said something like, take care of yourself or else we will have to re-transplant you. That was a hug moment.
Kathy told me reassuringly, "Your husband is an angel".
During one of my weak moments Diane told me to pick and choose my battles. She always helped to calm me down.
Florina braided my hair and we had a bonding moment. I remember in the early days she came in and told me, I am here to protect you from infection.
Lynda said, "Go Risa Go" while taking a test drive with my legs.
Veronica said when I was on the vent, "It is all up to you. You can do it!"
Dwight- Encouraged me to walk without oxygen for the first time.
Paul said, "It's just twice around the unit and you will go to the 14th floor." Paul had SO much patience.
Dr. Martinez asked me whether I would want to do a transplant again, if necessary. Wow, what a compliment!
Marvinette's smile and laugh just melted my temper away. "There goes that finger again."
Mandy- "Your Father reminds me of a distinguished Senator."
Nimpha- One painful night she aided in my relief and believed in me.
Brie-One night when de-satting, She told me, "Risa you are talking you are not supposed to have on your speech valve at night." She was always there for me.
Helen- Do not stress out Risa. You will increase your catecholamine levels. These words helped to snap me back into reality.
Strider never gave up when my sat monitor would not stick. He was always there from day one to my last day.
Wyatt-"you are doing well" when I was on the vent. He tried to make me feel as comfortable as possible.
I remember Peng how sweet her presence was.
Elsa was like my Mother away from home. She kept me on my toes and listened to me with a smile.
Dr. Shafazand exclaimed, "You are a survivor!"
Dr. Castillo said to me months after my release from the hospital, "One would never know by looking at you that you have had a transplant!"
Louise gave me sisterly advice. One night when I called she told me I looked like a million.
Donna would give you the shirt off her back. She shed some happy tears for me when I got well.
Barbara was always so sweet. Just looking at her would give me the feeling of a sense of peace.
Shamaya - after I got out of bed for the first time she said, "You inspire me"
Marilyn-loved when she laughed at my crazy sense of humor.
Seenya and Needa were watching over me. They would often peak into my room to see if I was ok at night.
Sally-thank you for hanging up my news article from last year and running a good ICU.
Phil- I remember when he put in one of my lines he told me how strong I was and how I had a high pain threshold.
Thank you Gloria for providing me with a few more names. I hope I did not forget too many. If I see you, I am sure I will think of something that you did that made a difference.
When I was promoted to the 14th floor, I was very pleasant after all I had gone through during boot camp training In the ICU. I felt that I was a professional by this time. I had many healing dreams of flying and people blessing me. I was very well liked by the nurses. I learned from my mistakes.
I have so many more encouraging memories from my time in and following my ICU stay; however, unfortunately I cannot recall everyone's name. The staff's gift of encouragement was nonetheless always greatly appreciated. Through my trials and tribulations the entire team taught me invaluable lessons. Six years ago I created Transplantbuddies.org for the purpose of helping the transplant community-at-large. This website has been extremely successful.
My transplant was a long journey sort of like reality TV. I feel that you have all helped me to win life's grand prize?! God Bless You ALL!
Post Number: 3247
|Posted on Friday, July 10, 2009 - 10:53 pm: ||
Wow! How did you remember all those people? You remembered names of so many people. It's a beautiful letter and I am sure that all those people appreciated your gratitude and thanks.
Dx: BOOP - May 2006. Rediagnosed with Bronchiolitis Obliterans Nov. 2006
Listed Feb 2008 - Waiting on double lung transplant at Cleveland Clinic
Be kinder than necessary because everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle.