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Home : Community : Customer Gallery : Crocheting through a Liver Transplant

Customer Projects - Get Inspired

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Crocheting through a Liver Transplant
Created By: M Marilynn

In the spring of 2006 my husband was told that if he did not get a liver transplant immediately, that would be the end.
We traveled to Jacksonville, FL from our home in Tennessee. I brought books and my set of crochet hooks, but I didn't bring any yarn with me. I had no idea what to expect. The first appointment was a blood draw. They took 39 vials of blood from my very sick and very frail husband. Yes, I counted them...39 vials. I became very afraid and somewhat traumatized by the beginning of this ordeal.
Next, I found a church. I was embraced by a very warm couple and a knitting ministry. Even though I crocheted, I was invited to participate by crocheting with these lovely ladies. One of the women took me shopping to a couple of yarn stores. I made some purchases and began crocheting feverishly. I crocheted in the waiting rooms during my husband's procedures, lab tests, and overnight stays at the hospital. It helped pass the time, and I knew that I would have something with me to comfort me during the long hospital waits.
I made several blankets as gifts to other liver patients. They were always so cold. It really bothered my husband that he couldn't ever get warm. It was really warm in Florida in April and May, yet he wanted the A/C off in our hotel room. I began to realize that I could be useful to the other transplant patients who were waiting if I created something that would be practical, lightweight, and made with love. I made lap-gans, shoulder-gans, and other coverings.
I crocheted and cried as we waited through the 3 month evaluation process. I crocheted and wept on the day after my birthday when the call came that there was a possible organ. We went to the hospital, he got prepped, and we waited. I crocheted through all of that. It kept me sane.
During the night of his surgery, I think I crocheted non-stop for at least 3 or 4 hours. I finally slept. The crocheting allowed me to not think of everything that could go wrong. It kept me focused on what was right in the world. I could pray while making the simple double-crochet stitches in my diagonal block stitch blankets.
Since coming home to Tennessee, I have begun a prayer shawl ministry. Two ladies from my home church are learning to crochet. One other lady already knows how to crochet. We have made 4 prayer shawls that were donated to people in our community who have experienced loss of health or loss of a loved one.
I credit my Aunt Lillian Smith for the gift of crochet. She taught me to crochet when I was 8 years old. If I did not have that hobby, I think my mental ability to cope with the ordeal of going through a transplant as a care-giver would have been seriously compromised.

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