Our mum Ellen was taken from us after battling influenza in intensive care for nine weeks. Mum was aged 45 at the time.
I remember the day well when I came home from work to find Mum wasn't there, she had been taken to emergency by my sister earlier that day and I was none the wiser.
Mum had been sick with the flu for over a week at home before her health dramatically declined. I received a call that night to say they had to put Mum on a ventilation system to help her breathe. I spoke with her on the phone to say I would be up to see her the following day. I never knew then that it would be the last time I would speak to my mum.
I was very fortunate that over the nine weeks Mum was ill, I was able to be close by - unlike many of our family who could not be. We met countless ICU doctors, however, sadly, Mum's health never improved and slowly declined as time passed by.
When we were told by the doctors that Mum would never recover, the impossible had to be done which meant turning off Mum's life support.
There was no doubt in our minds that Mum would have wanted to be an organ donor, so when the question came up we knew it was what Mum would have wanted. Mum was the type of person who would help a stranger and could never say no to anyone in need of a hand.
It gives us solace to know that two lives were saved from Mum's organs as we know it could have been us on the other end of the spectrum if circumstances were different.
I urge everyone to register for organ donation, don't wait until you have to experience a life changing event yourself, as it could be your loved one who is given a second chance at life.