This last week, Abby finally had a perfect clinic, perfect, like EVERYTHING looked good! Every single thing! Her echo, her blood counts, her labs, everything! It was so nice for a change. In fact, I think it could have been one of her first perfect clinics! It's about time too. It's been 20 months since her transplant, we were due for a perfect clinic. Dr. Everitt wanted her next visit to be her annual biopsy in June, but I had to nix that idea. We won't be doing her annual until after our Hawaii trip the first week in June. So, we'll just return for a clinic visit a few days before our trip. I just want to make sure that everything looks okay before we leave for a vacation. We'll be doing her annual the first week in July instead. The transplant team didn't want to make very many changes since things looked so good. The only change is that we're lowering her prograf level(anti-rejection meds) to between 5 and 8 rather than between 8 and 11. I guess this is standard for the second year post transplant. It makes me a little nervous, but I always trust her transplant team will do what's best for Abby.
And now for the thing I've been hesitant to write about, but I feel like I should. Last month I was going to teach a lesson in our young women's about finding comfort when a loved one dies. I thought it would be perfect to have Abby talk about her near-death experience. I was a little nervous to ask her to do it, because in the past she was nervous to talk about it to anyone but family. But, she said she wanted to do it! Our plan was for me to give the background about her transplant, then for Abby to read her experience, then to let the girls and other leaders ask questions. Abby didn't want to just teach them, that made her too nervous. We talked for a while about everything that had happened to Abby since May 18th, then Abby started to read what she had written about her experience. She made it about half way through and then the tears started falling. I think by that point everyone in the room had tears in their eyes. I helped her finish reading and then she asked if there were any questions. I couldn't believe how quiet it was in that room. I don't think that anyone knew what to say, it was just too much to take in and they had to think about it for a minute. Finally, after a few minutes of silence, they started to talk and ask questions. Abby was completely calm and confident in everything that she had to say and the girls listened to every word that came out of her mouth. It was actually a very spiritual experience.
Near the end, as Abby was talking about some of the things that Christ said to her, she said something that I had never heard her talk about before. Something that I kind of wish I never would have heard her say. She very peacefully said that while she was with Christ, one of the things that He said was that He would see her again in 4 years. WHAT???? She went on to say that now she was now almost to the halfway point. First of all, I couldn't believe that she said it at all, then I couldn't believe that she hadn't ever told me that little fact. I had the biggest lump in my throat, but somehow made it through the rest of the lesson. I didn't know what to think, and I couldn't believe that Abby could be so calm about it. As soon as we got in the car I asked her more about it. She said that she had told Britt about it and that they decided that it was better for me not to know. They thought it would scare me too much, and they were probably right! When I asked Britt about it later that night, she said that Abby had told her about it one night. I asked Britt if Abby was upset about it, but Britt said that she wasn't at all, she was just very matter of fact. It's just what He said.
I've been throwing this around in my head for last couple of weeks. It took me a long time to tell anyone, I think that I was afraid that if I talked about it, it would make it more true. It's definitely shocking, and not something that any mom should ever have to think about. I didn't know what to do with the information that was given to me. I now know that even though this will always be in the back of my mind, I can't live my life in fear of what could happen in 2 more years. Abby doesn't want to live like that either. I've convinced myself of the fact that time in heaven is much different than time on earth. Four years to Christ could be a lifetime for us. Am I still scared?? Yes, but I was scared before I learned this anyway. Living with a child that has had a heart transplant is already living with the unknown. I already knew that things could change at any second. Abby's heart transplant didn't "fix" her, I know that. So, what do we do now? We continue living our lives like we already do. We remember to be grateful for every day and for the little things that happen. We focus on the good and try to live each day like it's the last. We spend time with the people we love and we appreciate every last second that we get with Abby! Hopefully, there will be many, many more....I'm counting on it.