Organ Donation is a conversation, and we want to #TellYourStory. Today we feature the story of Peter Leid, who received a Bi Lateral Lung Transplant in February 2008.
1. How long were you on the waiting list for your organ?
2. What was life like before the transplant? How did you spend your days?
Difficult. It was not possible to visit the toilet or take a shower unaided.
3. Describe the emotions experienced when you received “the call” for your transplant?
This was a Wednesday morning in February 2008. I was required to be at the Johannesburg Hospital by 6pm that day. I have never been more excited in my life… my wife looked like “Bambi in the headlights”… in what seemed like a flash and a blur I had arrangements made by my secretary, my mother, my wife, my son at school, my friends in Johannesburg all sorted and I was at Cape Town International Airport in a wheel chair asking an Italian visitor if I could push in front of him – my wife was getting clearance for oxygen… for the last day! I didn’t know if I’d ever see my family again… I knew I’d be coming back to Cape Town one day in the future or “going home” and I was ready for either option.
4. What is life like now after the transplant?
After eleven years I have almost forgotten I was ever ill, ever short of breath, ever at physio every day of my previous life. I know I’m very lucky, but truth be told… I hadn’t thought that there would ever be a problem, I had handed it over entirely to Jesus my Savior… long ago. I heard Angus Buchan praying for me on the radio… I knew I was in the best hands I could be in ever.
5. What advice would you give patients on the waiting list?
Give yourself a fighting chance. If you are over or under weight… fix it. Prepare yourself, study, plan a future for after the transplant. Make a pact with yourself to follow the instructions you are given by your transplant team exactly as they say. Take your medicine like a Swiss Watch every day, never miss… EVER.