Weʼre raising £2,500 to Help Natasha Create Memories.
- Bishop's Stortford, United Kingdom
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“It won’t happen to me”, you may never say it aloud but it’s there, just a whisper in the back of your mind whenever something awful happens to the friend-of-a-friend. Terminally ill at forty-two! Me?
In 2009 at the age of thirty-five I was diagnosed with a lung disease, nonspecific interstitial pneumonia, at first we didn’t know it was terminal – they’d give me some meds and in a couple weeks I’d be okay, right? Goodness, a terminal was just an area at an airport!
It quickly became apparent that this wouldn’t be the case, my lungs started to deteriorate quickly – several rounds of chemotherapy added no stability to my condition. I honestly take my hat off to anyone who has done chemotherapy – it is torture.
My last “chance” (if you will) was a lung transplant, however to even have my file reviewed I had to undergo five days of tests – which I passed – only to be told that the only reason I was even considered was my age. Due to the fact that the lung disease is only one of my many illnesses I was deemed too complicated a case and rejected. Unfortunately giving me a pair of lungs was viewed as a waste – it’s funny, I never even thought about what criteria makes you worthy of something 90% of people have!
This rejection not only meant that I wouldn’t be getting onto the transplant list, it also meant there was nothing more they could do for me. I was referred to Hospice - where these wonderful, amazing people (staff & volunteers) have made it all just that little bit easier to swallow. They have helped me prepare letters and memory boxes for me to leave my loved ones and have encouraged me to start putting together a bucket list.
My inability to leave the house without oxygen and most days now, my wheel chair have made it apparent that, with my limited days to be able to travel somewhat comfortably, I would have to think of what I wanted to see and do before it became impossible. With all my family and school friends still living in South Africa, I would love nothing more than to see them all one last time.
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Lorna Soares & Natasha Stemp started crowdfunding