Mom’s Heart Transplant Journey: The Wait Begins

Mom’s journey to her heart transplant continued. The cardiologists determined that she would need a new a heart, but that it would not be an immediate thing to happen. Basically, she endured a “hurry up and wait” period for some time until she was determined eligible to be placed on the transplant list.

Mom went through routine testing before she was placed on the transplant list. These tests consisted of echocardiograms, pulmonary pressure tests that measure the pressures in her heart, blood tests and a test called a BPH test, which if it went higher from test to test, then she was in a higher level of heart failure. Her heart pressure tests were measured using a swans line in her neck.

These tests were conducted on a regular basis before her name would appear on the list. Essentially, she needed to become sick enough to have her name placed on the list. In early 2003, the tests did indeed show that she was eligible for her name to be placed on the heart transplant list. It was both a blessing and a scary time for our family.

In reality, we knew that without a heart transplant, Mom would die. So, because our family works the way we work: none of us believed that she wouldn’t receive a heart transplant. I absolutely refused to believe that a heart would not be made available in time to save her life. I also focused on the fact that my mom was with us and she was doing okay, so I just let myself believe that this would continue. She would get a heart and all would be well.

After Mom’s name was placed on the heart transplant list, she continued to have the heart tests that I mentioned above. I imagine that none of it was pleasant, but she endured them and I never once heard her complain. She also knew that this entire process was one that would lead to a life-saving heart transplant for her.

In August of 2003 my husband and I found out we were pregnant with our second child. My mom again, set a goal to be around for the birth of what would be her sixth grandchild.

Tune in tomorrow for what happened next…..

For catching up on this story, read these:

Part One
Part Two
Part Three
Part Four