Saturday, November 7, 2009

Don't Let Wellness Get in the Way

The transplant process is a double edged sword. Each side has its protocol to provide the best opportunity for success. Each case is unique and there are no guarantees or absolutes but these guidelines are based on past experiences. On the front side of transplant, one should stay as healthy as possible and follow all the directions regarding meds, diet and appointments provided by the transplant team.

On the post side of transplant there is a much different group of meds and a whole new protocol. Your opportunity to recover is very realistic, no matter how impossible it may seem. Even though there are new "issues" to deal with, such as diabetes, insulin, odd side effects, changes in long practiced habits like Caffeine, or even favorite foods. As you continue to "stay within the lines" with the visits, meds, exercise and diet, you will notice things getting better and easier. The word normal starts to show itself in the distance but it is spelled differently or in a new font. This will become the "New Normal" .

Maintaining your new reality and health is a new challenge that will require consistent adherence to change. That may sound like an oxymoron, but it is a good way of describing it. As you get further from the transplant date things will be changing. With your new organ functioning properly your meds may be reduced, some side effects will subside, you begin to feel better, appointments become less frequent and meds are reduced. This is, by no means, the time to relax any of the needed routines that remain. There are meds you will be on for the rest of your life and taking them exactly as prescribed is as important on day 4000 as it was on day 4 post transplant. The same goes for the dietary and exercise regimens. You need to maintain vigilance to continue to enjoy the second chance you have been granted. Never become complacent with your success.

Be good to each other,
Tin Man

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