It has been three years since I went under the knife to have a second chance at life.
As I was growing up, I was often reminded of my shortened life expectancy. It is something you can't seem to get away from, its something that sticks with you. When you hear something often enough, you start to believe it as 100% truth.
As I was recovering in hospital from the transplant, I remember being overcome with anxiety at the thought of the future. If I wasn't going to die, what do I do now? I hadn't planned entirely for the future. Everyone had told me I wasn't going to have one.
Thankfully I am not one to wallow in self-pity, after a little bit of anxiety the answer came to me, What do I do now? Anything I dream!
This last year has been incredible. I saw my best friend marry the girl of his dream (also happy birthday to him, he is kind enough to share his day.) I was able to travel to Japan, Canada, Canada again, Thailand, and Singapore. I started my own business. I was able to watch my friends continue to succeed in their lives, and most importantly, I was able to share it all with Jaz.
None of this would have been possible without my donor, their choice to save a life and donate their lungs, has had such an impact on my life and the lives of those around me. I will never be able to thank them, but I hope their family knows, they were related to a hero.
If you know someone who is unsure about being an organ donor, please share this post. Hopefully, they can see the positivity that stems from such a decision.
To my donor, their family, the nurses and the doctors, and everyone else that helped save my life, from the bottom of my heart, Thank you. -Ash
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