Friday, 8 February 2013

From the Heart

Late last Friday afternoon I got a call from my Transplant Co-ordinator, she began the conversation with 'don't worry it's not your transplant call', as she always does, so I know not to start getting in a panic and went on to ask if Rob and I would like to be interviewed by ITN news about living on the transplant list. Of course we were happy to try and help. She explained how ITV are running a whole series of features, interviews and programmes during the whole of next week - starting Monday 11th - to help raise awareness of need for people to stop and think and register on the organ donor register. She explained that the ITN news are reporting from Papworth for their main news bulletins and will be filming for two weeks starting this week. This week they are filming interviews and features around and about the hospital and at various other locations with pre and post transplant patients and next week they will be broadcasting these features live from the hospital. They are also on standby should a transplant operation take place and I know several of us have agreed to have our transplant story filmed, should we be lucky enough to get the call, it would really be the icing on the cake for promoting organ donation should a transplant happen, so fingers crossed some lucky person gets their call.    

It was only after when I thought about this phone call, that I realised it hadn't even entered my head when the co-ordinator rang that it may be my actual call, it should have done really being the end of the week and end of the day. I think this is the result of waiting for so long, it's as though it isn't really going to happen and it's becoming a bit of a fantasy. I think I'm going to be in for one big shock when that call actually comes and I've needed to just remind myself that this will happen sometime.   

The filming was scheduled for Wednesday and as we got to the morning I began to feel a little nervous and apprehensive about what was going to happen. Do you ever stop for a minute and wonder where life has brought you? Here we were anticipating ITN news coming round ours to chat about waiting for a heart and lung transplant- a situation that would have been beyond our wildest imagination less than three years ago!  

Well they actually arrived and it wasn't a dream and we were even more surprised when we saw that the reporter was Lawrence McGinty, the Science and Medical Editor for ITV news. We have often seen him reporting on TV and had even joked in the past about how we need someone like him on the case of PH and Organ Donation and then here he was having a cuppa with us in our kitchen!  

It was all relaxed and informal, although I did feel nervous and think I did waffle on a bit; I hope I did manage to say some of the right things to get people thinking. I know too, that PH and organ donation are both huge topics and could be discussed for ever and a day, so to think of everything in just a few minutes, with lights and camera and people watching you intently was a difficult one, I knew I couldn't possibly say everything!  

We are so delighted with ITV, that they are taking the bull by the horns and giving organ donation this most valuable air time. It is a real boost for people in our situation to know that somebody, somewhere is standing up for our cause and people are getting together in a hugely co-ordinated and concerted effort to help us in a big way, at last we are not slipping by unnoticed. It has got to get people talking about organ donation and discussing it with their families and hopefully get lots of people coming forward to sign the organ donor register. I personally cannot begin to thank them enough and I will be staying tuned to the TV for most of the week next week! 

So what to watch out for each day starting Monday, February 11th:  

This Morning
Loose Women
ITV Lunchtime, early evening and evening news with features live from Papworth Hospital
Wednesday 13th 'Tonight' Programme and 'From the Heart' entertainment special
Daily local TV reports and features about transplant

And don't forget: Our interview with ITN news will most probably be on Monday lunch and early evening news, but keep an eye out; my friend Stacie on Daybreak on Wednesday 13th; follow Will Pope's story on Tonight on Wednesday evening!  

Following our excitement of Wednesday, we have had a flurry of local media attention through my blog and a husband, who has taken to 'tweeting' about transplant and organ donation. So the week has continued being busy, busy and I will tell all about the excitement of the next few days in my next blog soon!

Meanwhile if you want to register as an organ donor:  
Support the campaign for an 'opt out system for organ donation:

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