Sort of picking up from last time –
Going back to Big Kidney Day. After the meeting with the social workers, I met with everyone else on the team. Everybody rotated around so that each of us (in the group of patients) would have one-on-one meetings with all the medical professionals.
There isn’t anything earth-shattering to report about the meetings with anyone else (well, until we get to the psychologist… but you know, in all these in-between people).
The donor advocate explained that she is there for us and purely for us. She doesn’t even have access to the charts of the people who need kidneys because they think it’s important for a person to be completely on the side of the donor without any feelings or thoughts for the recipients clouding any judgement.
I also met the nurse coordinators. I talked with the surgeon and the nephrologist. Everyone was cool and fine. Nothing big to report here – just little conversations making sure I understood everything from the morning.
The only thing about this section that bothered me was that one of the doctors mentioned, “well, the earliest you’ll be in surgery is June.” The donor coordinator happened to be walking by at the time, which was helpful, so we could clear this up.
For me, at the time, March seemed like it would be the best time to give. As I mentioned earlier, back in December, I asked how long it would take to go through the process. She said it usually takes about three months. I asked at least three times throughout the process if we were still probably on for a March donation. Each time she said if things kept going the way they were, it looked like we could be.
Only now, at Big Kidney Day, after I’d already flown to Ohio, did I find out from her as she happened to pass by in the hallway, “Oh yeah. Altruistic donors have to have an additional three-month waiting period once their application is complete.” (This is a “cooling off period” to make sure donors are really, really, really sure.)
You couldn’t have told me this anytime before this very moment?!
I mean, I guess we could say maybe at the beginning she didn’t say that, since I was being tested for someone specifically. But we found out pretty early that I was not a match for him and would be giving altruistically. So, when I kept checking in about March, you could’ve given me a heads up…
Let’s pick up here next time.