[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Written By: Kent Bressler, AAKP BOD and Ambassador (TX)
Kip and I spent most of the night before the transplant talking about just about everything. He was his usual easy going steady self and did not seem anxious at all. I was so sick I didn’t really care my creatinine level was 17 and I was confused, weak, full of fluid and nauseated. Sleep did not come easy that night, it seemed as though all I could do was think about what was coming. I was too sick to be fearful I just didn’t know what to expect. I prayed that my wife Cathy and girls Gretchen and Celeste would be able to handle what was coming. I knew that Dr. Banowsky my transplant surgeon and Mulgrew, my nephrologist and mentor were ready to go and that I was in good hands.
My good friend and bible study partner Holly Shirley had encouraged me to read and memorize Philippians 4:6&7, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. That was the last thing I remember that night before the transplant. It gave me a peace and joy that I had not had for a long time. All would be well and I felt it.
They woke Kip and I up at 5:30 am and we both showered and got ready to be transferred to the surgical holding. Cathy and I had a little time to talk and I remember telling her that it would be so much better when I got through to just pray and believe that it would be in God’s hands. When we got to the holding area Kip and I wished each other the best had a short prayer and we were separated. I remember them starting my IV and talking to the OR crew and the anesthesiologist and being wheeled into OR. After that I remember nothing and the next thing I heard was someone telling me it went well and that there was urine in the bag. That was on April 30, 1987, thirty one years ago.
My family and I have come a long way in the past thirty one year’s my children have grown up and I know have four great fun loving grandchildren. I have had a successful career in nursing and medicine and must say that it has been a great ride. God has been good to us and we continue to help others with kidney disease.
April is National Donate Life Month and I want to take the time to encourage you to consider becoming a living donor. My brother’s Kip and Kerry where ready to donate and I know that without their willingness it would have been very difficult for me to have survived. Kip, it is impossible to tell you how much your gift has meant to me and our family. Thanks for being there for me.
Learn about becoming a living donor @ http://www.livedonortoolkit.com/
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