Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Kerry xxx

This isn't a blog I wanted to write.

Obviously, it's not a blog you want to write about anyone. But with Kerry, it seems even more unfair. I wanted to be able to write one day that she got the call she'd been waiting for and was recovering from the lung transplant so she desperately needed. Beyond needed.

But that never happened. On 21st March, Kerry passed away, surrounded by her family, fiancé, and puppies. She was 23.

I do wonder if Kerry knew the staple status she clearly held within in the CF community. As she was too ill and too exhausted to post on facebook herself, people would be hanging on the every word that came via Josh, her fiancé, as he tried his hardest to keep people updated on her, even when things were quiet and there hadn't been much change. For nearly two years Kerry waited on the transplant list for a call that never came, and it was an even longer battle before that to gain the weight she desperately needed or else she would be refused to go on the list. I remember back when she was well enough to post and blog, and she'd update everyone on her progress of controlling her diabetes and also gaining about 3 stone (She went from a fragile 5 stone to actually passing her target of 8 stone, along with the help of Megace to increase her appetite which was a fight in itself to get the drug prescribed. She couldn't even use her PEG as she was allergic to feed products). She was so proud of what she'd achieved, and she definitely had more determination than I've seen in a long while which is probably one of the main things that kept her going for so long despite being so ill, hooked up to her BiPap and basically bed bound for a large chunk of the last two years.

Despite having a rough time of it, she was also the poster girl for Live Life then Give Life, which isn't too surprising considering the fact that she was stunning, but it also portrayed the message well that sometimes you can't always see the fight in someone's body. Since she passed, people have been sharing the post from the LLTGL facebook page and it's reached literally thousands of people, and if it any amount of people sign up, you know she'd be greatful. I posted the link to the sign up page on the organ donation site on my own facebook, and several people shared it, so if it made people at least think about it, I'm happy. I don't get involved much with transplant stuff as I'm still a while away from it myself but I do try and urge people to sign up or tell them about how it's helped so many people I know finally get to live their lives. I just wish Kerry got that chance. She never even got a chance to get married, which is one of the things she wanted to do with new lungs so she could really enjoy the day.

I'm not going to pretend I talked to her every day, or that we were best mates or anything. We did speak now and again, but not for a long while as she had enough to contend with and probably wanted to use the little energy she had to communicate with her family and close friends rather than listen to my wittering on.

She seemed to just have such bad luck health wise over the past few years. With everything from diabetic stuff, needing weight gain, to several lung collapses and even having to be admitted to hospital a handful of times which is one place she made very clear was not her favourite of places to be, it just seemed like she had to get her lungs, just for a bit of good luck, to make the past few years come to a point even? It was something everyone knew could happen, she didn't expect to make it to christmas 2012 yet alone see the one after that, but she had a hell of a lot of fight, and yet put up with it all without complaining, seeing the positive side, thinking of others before herself. She was always one to ask how you are, or comment on your blog (and assured me she was one who read mine when I was considering jacking it in as I thought it was literally viewer-less). Definitely one of a kind, and it makes no surprise her story has already reached national press.

Josh has also set up the Kerry Alex Thorpe Trust on facebook - https://www.facebook.com/thekerryalexthorpetrust?fref=ts

I know she was friends with both Clare and Loz, so I hope they've all found each other wherever they are xxx

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