Today is a special day, right about now, 7:30pm last year, I was being wheeled out of the Operation Theatre, hooked up to a number of machines and wasn’t aware of what was going on. On the other hand, my family and friends, people I didn’t even know, were praying for me in the hopes that there would be no complications throughout the operation and I would come out fine.
As the LVAD operation is an extremely dangerous one, it comes with many complications and I remember the look on my parents faces when they were signing the documents to go through with the operation. I remember the hours before, I didn’t sleep all night because I was being prepared for the operation and had many last minute things to do. My sister came down to Hong Kong for a couple of days to be there, by my side and support me through it all as well as supporting my family. I spent the hours before with family and everyone was trying to be very strong.
The minutes before being strolled into the operation theatre, I spent with my Sister, Mother and Father. They asked me one question - “If you don’t make it out, what do we do?” And I remember the answer so clearly, I said, “If i end up in a coma, don’t let me go till my next birthday, but when and if I go, throw a party and make sure that everyone has an amazing time. I wouldn’t want people to be upset about my passing, I’d want them to remember me for the great things I did. Just make sure theres a lot of booze and people enjoy”.
The scariest thing going into that operation theatre was the fact that some people don’t make it out but somehow, I knew I would be fine, I didn’t know how long it would take me to be fine, but I knew I’d get there eventually. I MADE IT!
I want to take this opportunity to thank some people before I continue,
Dr. TW.K Au - The man who oversees every single medical problem I have, the man who decides everything with regards to my health and treatment
DR. K.C Ho - The woman behind the whole operation, successfully taking me through my LVAD operation and my Heart Transplant surgeon for the future
Dr. K Fan - Without her judgement call and analysis of my situation, I wouldn’t be here today
Dr. L. Lee - Supporting Surgeon and the doctor who manages to take blood from me when we can barely see my veins (even if it takes 10 tries, he never gives up)
Dr. M. Wong - Supporting surgeon and the doctor who somehow always manages to make sure I am fine and am staying calm
Lastly, but most importantly, Siu Lai and Nurse Hall - I would like to thank you both from the bottom of my heart, I know (sometimes) I can be a pain in the ass, with my non-stop questions and messaging, but I really thank you both for believing in me and really being the true reason for my recovery.
To continue my post I would just like to highlight some of my achievements throughout this year -
Firstly, the day I was discharged from hospital. It honestly doesn’t feel like one year ago, but time has flown. This was my greatest achievement last year, from day one the doctors didn’t believe I’d make it out but I proved them wrong. It was a tough couple of months of not being able to leave my bed and see my friends but I fought hard to make it out. There isn’t a day where I think that the fighting was useless, I appreciate every minute I have and I want to thank you all for being a part of my journey.
Secondly, my TEDx talk - This is something that I will always be proud of, it was one of the best events I have ever been part of and it was a true honour to share my story with people. All I wanted to do was to show people how valuable life is.Thankfully I was given a second chance and therefore I want to show people that we shouldn’t take life for granted.
Lastly, being the keynote speaker at the graduation for the Graduating Class of 2017. It was tough not graduating, but I looked at the brighter side of it and said - This is my opportunity to meet new people, make new friends and also experience something different. I just want to say thank you to the class of 2017 for supporting me throughout my hospital time last year, and would also like to say thank you to the class of 2018, for welcoming me and including me in everything, it means a lot to be part of two wonderful graduating classes.
As for everyone else, I would like to say thank you to everyone. Friends, Family and even the people I may not know are reading, all your support has got me to where I am today.
To read the next part of my story, click the link below -