Cim’s Story

It seemed unreal. I saw Jonas, my not-so-little brother being wheeled into the operation theatre in St George’s hospital in London for major surgery. Can he live a normal life afterwards? Will he even survive? I was afraid; it seemed so unfair – he wasn’t even ill. He didn’t need surgery, I did. I needed a kidney transplant and Jonas was giving me one of his. It was December 2004 and a new life for me was about to begin.

Hi, my name is Cim Bartlett I’m 46, Swedish, I live in England, and today I’m completely fine. In fact, thanks to Jonas, I’ve just come back from an adventure odyssey to the Antarctic in March. Looking back to July 2004, this would have been unthinkable, because back then, I wasn’t so well: I could barely stand for longer than two minutes, I had to rest on the way upstairs to bed. I had end-stage renal failure, my kidneys were dying and I barely had the will to keep living

Cim groggy, post op.Cim Day 2 - Awake Cim Copenhage 33pc

Jonas’ great act of generosity changed all that; both he and I can live life to the full. Unfortunately, thousands of people in the UK and Sweden are living on a waiting list for a kidney, hoping for the phone call that might mean a new organ. In reality, they are waiting to hear that someone has died – perhaps in a car crash. Maybe they’ll be waiting for years. I want to change that, I want to show there is hope; there is a future, and I want to inspire others to be living kidney donors. And with your help, I know I can.

2008 is Transplant Year in the UK. My husband Jerry and I are raising money for the Transplants in Mind and raising awareness for live kidney donation. By going to Antarctica we are showing what is possible for people who have had kidney disease and subsequently, a transplant.

It’s great being able to do something that would have once been impossible, like going ice climbing on Antarctica. For me, it’s such a freedom to be hundreds and hundreds of miles from a hospital. Through this website and blog you can contribute to this adventure odyssey with me. You can sponsor us and you can spread the word. Come on; let’s see how much freedom we can create so that others can live life to the full.

Cim Bartlett. Woking, England. October 2007.

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