RESIGNED to never receiving the kidney she so desperately needed, Lynette Steph set about making the most of life.
Having already overcome a cancer scare, her kidney failure was just another challenge for the Maidstone grandmother.
When a doctor delivered the bad news in 2006, she knew she had a choice. She could wait in the vain hope of one day receiving a kidney or make the most of her time left.
“I think the fact I never believed I would get a kidney was a big part of getting through,” says Lynette. “The whole time I went on dialysis I had in my head, this is my life and I’m not going to sit at home and be miserable, I’m going to make it part of my life.”
When Lynette went on dialysis in 2009 she was told she was unlikely to receive a kidney because she faced an eight-year wait, which would take the 64-year-old past the age criterion.
So when the call came out of the blue late last year, informing her a donor match had been made, Lynette was completely bowled over.
In fact, she was at her beloved Sunshine RSL Memorial Bowling Club at the time, putting together the pennants team.
“I was dumbfounded,’’ she says. ‘‘I couldn’t believe I’d got one.”
Lynette had been managing her dialysis and trying not to let it interfere too much with her life.
But the new kidney has changed things. Now returning to strength, she is adamant she will be back on the bowling green before the year’s out.
“That is what has kept me going. I don’t think I could have come through this if I hadn’t had a focus. You’ve only got one life to live and you’ve got to live every minute the best you can. You never catch me at home — now I’ve got wheels and no dialysis machine to cart with me, I’m always off and gone!”