Heart Transplant Recipient Graduates HS

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tree plantingImagine that moment when a mother holds her baby for the first time. The dreams for the future; the fear of living up to everything your child needs; the love you have for this little person you just met. Many of us have experienced that moment.

Now imagine that within a few hours you notice that your baby’s lips look a little blue and you know something is just not right. You call for a nurse and your child is soon being transported to a children’s hospital.

This is what happened to a young mother named Wendy. She soon learned that her son’s heart had not developed correctly and she was given three choices. As she contemplated those choices, she felt her dreams for the future crash. One option was to take her son home. They could have hospice come in to help make him as comfortable as possible and enjoy the short time they had. This was not an acceptable option for Wendy.

Another option was to try a procedure that would require a series of surgeries. Her doctor informed her that he was not sure how well this option would work for her son.

The final option was to put him on the transplant list in hopes of getting a heart transplant. Even with a heart transplant, they were estimating her son might live to be 5 to 8 years old. Wendy decided to list her son for a heart transplant and hope for the best.

This all happened about 19 years ago. Her son survived and thrived. Though he admits he has had some ups and downs over the years, he is alive and very grateful for that. He just graduated from high school and will celebrate his 19th birthday later this month. On the evening of his high school graduation, he and his family planted a tree in honor of his donor at the Loy Blake Park in West Point, Utah. Thanks to a mother who had to make an important decision on one of the worst days of her life, this young man is alive today; he is making plans for his future, and hopes to be a teacher some day. He and his mom will be forever grateful to the mom who said yes to organ donation. Organ donation saves lives. For more information about organ, eye and tissue donation, go to www.yesutah.org.

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