“I am literally waiting for someone to die so that I can live.”


Chronic illness is all about waiting.

Waiting for appointments, waiting for tests and waiting for results. For me I am waiting to find out if I am in fact even eligible for a kidney transplant.

I’ve been waiting to get on the transplant list, waiting until I start dialysis and now that I have started dialysis, I am still waiting… waiting for a kidney. I literally am waiting for someone to die so that I can live.

Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t a pity party. That is the reality of the situation. The blunt reality, but the reality none the less. Those words, ‘I am literally waiting for someone to die so that I can live;’ that very sentence has kept me in therapy for the past 18 months. All the guilt associated with that sentence has resulted in some very sleepless nights. I will say it another way. I will receive an organ, specifically a kidney from someone when they die and then I will live. It is a lot to absorb isn’t it?

And while I wait for this ‘death’ to happen, while I wait for the ‘match’; I have this robot aka the dialysis keeping me alive. My blood (or rather my toxic blood) is leaving my body going through a machine, getting filtered and then returning back to my body all clean and filtered. I mean I am all for natural medicine-gut-healing-kombucha, organic-kale-chips and hemp-seeds, but they aren’t going to keep me alive. That is the job of modern medicine. Of the robot. Of the dialysis.

And if trying to be a mother, a writer and a dialysis patient isn’t enough to wrap your head around on a daily basis; there is also the whole I am waiting for someone to die so I can live thing going on…

"I have this robot aka the dialysis keeping me alive." Image: Supplied.

So while on some says I sit and whinge ’cause because my life doesn’t looks as perfect as @WhatEverHerNameIs or that I have cellulite and can’t look as good as @GoodOnYouForBeingSoHealthyAllTheTime, or that the Instagram algorithm is really messed up these days, and no one is organically growing anymore, and my last post didn’t get likes that it should have got, or my last photo doesn’t go with my feed, or heaven forbid I posted and a time when my engagement is low #TheStressesOfBeingAMummyBlogger or my Lightroom app isn’t syncing photos how can I edit all my photos to have the same flow? #FirstWorldMummyBloggerProblems


On other days, I am literally grappling with the notion that in order for me to live without the aid of a machine, I will need someone to die, have registered with DonateLife Australia, have told their family their wishes, have their family respect their wishes, be a positive match; only to then undergo surgery, recieved new said kidney and take medicine for the rest of my life to stop my body rejecting it; oh and have all those nasty side effects of being on anti reception mediation for the rest of my life. #Intense #KidneyFailureProblemsTrumpMummyBloggerProblems

So while I am waiting…I thought why not use this platform to spread awareness of organ donation.

Did you know it only takes a few minutes to register to be an organ donor? You can register here. Or that you really do need to tell you family you want to be an organ donor? Before I needed a kidney I didn’t really know those things either.

Because hashtag life hashtag live in the moment, hashtag slowdown, hashtag mindfulness, hashtag mumlife were the buzz words I wanted to hear. Now I am all about waiting. I am living and still very much the same person, just with a little change in perspective. And a lot of guilt. I have so much guilt it can be consuming at times.

A post shared by EMMY O’NEILL (@the.oneills) on


But I know one thing to be very true.

The day I do get my new kidney, my second life, that day I won’t feel guilty anymore. I won’t feel guilt that someone has died so that I can live. I will feel externally grateful that they took a few minutes to be completely selfless. A few minutes to save someone else life. A few minutes to give me another life; a life to see my children grow up, my husband grow old and to watch my own smile lines thicken with the joys of life. I don’t know much, but I do know that.

So thank you from the bottom of my heart and my two busted up kidneys for all those people who have donated organs in the past and to all of you who are registered to donate. So incredibly grateful.

This week is DonateLife awareness week. Did you know only one in three Australians have joined the Australian Organ Donor, even though 81-per-cent believe registration of donation decisions is important? You can find out more about DonateLife here.