Jan Ross, Transplant Recipient
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I had always lived my life as though I was in a constant battle...
I was in Phoenix visiting my son and his family over Labor Day 2010. I flew back to Indianapolis on the red eye, and instead of getting up to go to work at 6 a.m., I watched the morning news. They did an interview with an Occupational Therapist who had had a pancreas transplant in Indianapolis. I immediately searched for and found that Indiana University Medical Center had one of the country’s top transplant programs. I attended the education, had all the lab tests done and was on the transplant list in about three weeks.
I had a follow-up appointment with my endocrinologist and asked him why I didn’t know that transplant was an option for me – his response was “you didn’t ask.” As you can imagine, it was the last time I saw him.
I had been insulin dependent for 42 years; this transplant was a miracle. I had to wait 6 months (which is a long time) for transplant because I had some antibody issues. I was called down for possible transplant twice before I received the miracle on the third trip. The surgery only took one and a half hours; I was in ICU for 36 hours and in the hospital a total of five days. I had an amazing recovery and feel so very blessed to have been given another 20 to 30 years of an active life. No highs, lows, unaware complications, vision issues.
I had always lived my life as though I was in a constant battle and the disease was not going to win. I chose to live my life and not be a victim of my circumstances. I have two beautiful sons, a wonderful daughter-in-law and two amazing grandchildren. My life is blessed beyond belief, and all the guardian angels that I have challenged over the past 42 years can rest now.
My husband and I relocated to Phoenix 15 months ago and life is absolutely amazing. I found out even though I am a recipient I can still be a donor and now am a registered donor.
The gift of a quality life is amazing.
Thank you to my donor and their family