Last week, lifelong CLDF supporter, Lucy, celebrated a very special occasion – the 30th anniversary of her liver transplant.
Lucy, who was born with an unknown disease which caused cirrhosis of the liver, was given a liver transplant when she was just three. She received just one lobe and was amongst the first in the UK to receive a split liver transplant.
“I don’t remember much about that time but one thing I do know is how lucky I am”, she says. “Organ donation is so important and does so much good. By agreeing to it, you’re choosing to save a life which is an amazing thing to do. And it’s not just the recipient but also their family and loved ones who benefit. Without organ donation, I wouldn’t have lived for another 30 years! I’ll always be grateful to my donor and their family for this gift. And I’d implore everyone to consent to organ donation because of that.
“I got a tattoo earlier in the year to honour my donor in remembrance for this milestone. And I’m planning to do a fundraiser later in the year for CLDF because this charity have helped my family and me so much.
“My life is pretty great as it goes. I’m very lucky because I continue to be well and healthy and really enjoy my job as a copywriter, working for a marketing agency in Reading. I live with my husband, James, in Newbury with our two pets, a cat called Kovu and a dog called Mia. After lockdown, I’m really enjoying having an excuse to go out every day to walk the dog!
“We celebrated the anniversary by doing a long walk down in Seaford, East Sussex. It’s a beautiful spot, very close to where my Mum and Granny live. My Mum, brother and husband joined me. And, of course, Mia! The sun made a special appearance too!
“To any other young person who has had or is facing a liver transplant I would say so long as you follow doctors’ advice and keep taking your medication, you can keep enjoying life for a long time. If I could speak to my younger teenage self, I’d say: ‘Don’t so be worried about your scar or how others might react. You’ve been given a gift and something that makes you really unique – shout about it and be proud!’
The best way to honour your donor, their family and all the medical staff is by enjoying your life to the full.”