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I wasn't supposed to grow old!



Earlier today I had a Dr's appointment with the Infectious Disease Doctor's in Naples FL.

I had infused my last dose of a 14 day course of IV antibiotics to treat a bacterial infection in my lungs (
pseudomonas). Actually, they really aren't my lungs, they were donated to me from some poor fella who lost his life. I will refer to this person as my friend from here on in. Many people would call this person their angel. Since, I am an atheist, I choose not use the angel connotation.

My friend passed away almost 10 years ago and when my friend passed, he also passed his organs on to
UNOS, a non profit organization that procures and matches living organs to the best recipient based on a strict set of policies relating to ethics, tissue type, blood type, etc... UNOS then offered my friends lungs to me via Massachusetts General Hospital. I was one of the fortunate recipients, receiving both my friends lungs. UNOS will frequently split the lungs and save two lives, left lung, right lung. However, being diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis I required both lungs. Receiving one lung was not an option for me. The likelihood of my old lung contaminating a newly transplanted lung would be almost guaranteed.

Come to find out this wouldn't be the only time that I would be favored when it comes to being blessed with receiving a living organ that didn't always belong to me.

As I was traveling to the Dr's office I ran into a brief thunder shower, which is not uncommon this time of year here in Florida. When I turned on my windshield wipers, my wipers remained in place, nada, nothing. I can't remember the last time I used the wipers but I do know that I did not have any problems with them. I pulled over to the side of the highway and sat a moment contemplating. I did not want to be late for my Dr's appointment and I could see the sky was clear not even a mile ahead. I decided to give it a go and attempt to catch up to the clearing in the sky. I was squinting my eyes and moving my head about when the sky cleared and the rain stopped. I was going to make my appointment on time.

By the time I arrived home after my Dr’s appointment I had completely forgot about the windshield wipers and went about my day. It wasn't until later in the day when I remembered the windshield wipers, once again sucking the wind out of my day. I headed into the garage to troubleshoot my broken windshield wipers. Hoping it was going to be an easy fix, like a blown fuse, I went directly to the fuse box under the hood. Unable to locate the wiper fuse I decided to examine the owners manual in the glove box. When I hopped into the Land Cruiser I gave the windshield wiper another look. Something was wrong, the wiper switch was the headlight switch, no wonder my wipers didn't come on. The wiper switch was on the other side of the steering column on the directional arm. What an idiot, I was using the headlight switch thinking it was the windshield wiper switch. I felt like such a simpleton and yet I was filled with joy all at same time. I was thrilled my windshield wipers weren't broken but feeling very blue for my forgetfulness.

Here I am at 59 years of age, out living most all of my friends from the CF clinic, my elder sister of 11 months and wondering why I am still alive and all my friends and sister are gone. I wasn't supposed to grow old. I was supposed to die in my thirties, yet I’m still here beating the odds. Unfortunately, reaching the age of 59 comes with it some problems of which I never expected to experience. I have started experiencing the symptoms of growing old. I’m not as tall as I used to be, not that I ever was tall but every inch counts, I have lost a good inch of height, I am much less energetic, lack strength, I experience more aches and pains, my eye sight is poor, I have lost much weight, weighing in at 113lbs this week and worst I can’t remember what I did or what I need to do most of the time.

I don't know how much longer I will be around but I will continue to fight, kick and scream before I get put in the wooden box.