ORLA Tinsley has her sights set on competing in the World Transplant Games in 2019. The Newbridge native and Cystic Fibrosis campaigner who recently underwent a double lung transplant operation in New York has taken up the challenge from the Irish Kidney Association who tweeted her on New Year’s Day with the message: ‘World Transplant Games?!!
“Definately. If I can qualify,” responded Orla, to which the Irish Kidney Association replied, ‘The Irish team will have an open door for you!’
Just 10 days after she received what she has described as her ‘shiny new lungs’ Orla posted on Facebook to say that great progress has been made and she felt amazing.
The post included the accopanying photo. In her message to friends and supporters throughout the country, who have been inspired by her story she said; “My team @nyphospital is superb and I am very lucky. You might notice I have an NG tube in my nose. This is because I still can’t swallow properly which can happen for a few different reasons and I am doing daily exercises to fix this. (I am dreaming of mashed potato with gravy, roast chicken, roast potato, carrots and a giant glass of milk ?) My hearing has taken a hit too because that happens sometimes when you’ve on very high doses of oxygen or the feeding tube. It sounds like I’m under water mostly! With time, this should return.
“Every day feels like such a miracle. I have so much more energy than before and my motto will help conquer this journey “Be the tortoise, not the hare”. What a beautiful way to start the new year! I am so grateful for my donor. I am so grateful to their family. I can’t wait until a few weeks from now when I’m running and swimming!”
Orla tweeted that her new year resolution is to honour her donor every day through exercise, hard work and gratitude.
She has also posted several appeals asking people to carry an organ donor card and to have the conversation with their loved ones about organ donation.