Courageous woman warned she may have just weeks left to live shares her heartbreaking final wish
A woman whose doctors told her she may only have weeks left to live has shared her final wish with the world: a plea for more people to consider organ donation.
George Compton, a 28-year-old from Surrey, England, was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis as a baby, and has been battling the condition her whole life.
She was in and out of the hospital throughout her childhood and early adolescence, but when she was 21 her right lung collapsed and she was placed on the transplant list, requiring round-the-clock oxygen to survive.
She went through a double lung transplant in 2015, but at the end of last year her body rejected the transplant, and now her chances of survival are slim. George was struck by a bad chest infection over Christmas, and as her antibodies turned on her new lungs, they began to attack the foreign organ: leaving the lining of her lungs irreparably scarred.
Yet, despite the bleak prognosis she faces, George has made peace with her own mortality, and hopes that her story will inspire others to sign up as organ donors.
Speaking from her hospital bed, George said: "Not long ago, doctors warned that I could have just weeks to live. Since then, it’s been very up and down, but I’m getting stronger, especially mentally. If the worst does happen, I have come to terms with it. I’ve nearly finished planning my funeral. I just have some letters to finish to family members and family to say goodbye.
"But I’ve had the most amazing life. I am so grateful for everything it has brought me, and everyone that has come in and out of it. I can honestly say I will die the happiest girl ever and look back and say, ‘Yeah you know what, I made the most of that.’ If the worst does happen, I want my legacy to be that I lived, I loved, and I did it all with a smile on my face."
She added: "My health, up until now, has been amazing. All I wanted to do was make my donor proud of me and to live life happily with good lungs. It’s the small things you take for granted, if you’ve never been able to do them and, after my transplant, I could go on walks with my friends, get a full-time job, climb the O2 and hike Orrest Head in the Lake District, which I did seven weeks post-transplant. Most importantly, I’ve been able to use my story to promote organ donation in a positive light."
George is a supporter of Share Your Wishes, an organisation of transplant recipients, live donors and families of donors. If you'd like to learn more about organ donation, visit their website for help and further advice.