OWASSO – While most people know February 14 is Valentine’s Day, they may not know it’s also National Donor Day, and one couple has a special reason to celebrate them both.
In life not too many second chances are dealt.
"For about a year and a half I lived with the idea that it was very possible I wouldn't have any of this.”
With his second chance Jamie Turner is taking in the small things, like his son’s Wednesday evening tumbling practice.
"It would take a lot out of Jamie to go to the kid's events and sometimes he would miss stuff,” said his wife Lisa Turner.
There was a time Jamie couldn’t stand in the tumbling gym.
"It was about 2 years ago, I was having a lot of nausea, a lot of abdominal pain."
He thought he had the flu, maybe an infection.
"I didn't realize how serious it was and how serious it was going to be."
His doctor sent him to a specialist, and suddenly the life frozen in the photos on their refrigerator was different.
"It was pretty sobering that night when they'd told me what they found."
He said doctors told him he had Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease.
"They really indicated that I probably wouldn't have a long time to live."
He was put on a donor waiting list.
"I remember telling them that I was very, very sick and that I needed a surgery and if I didn't get that surgery it wouldn't go very well for me."
At one of his lowest moments, sitting in a hospital bed his wife didn’t know what to do or say.
"She said you know if I could give you part of my liver I would."
Little did she know she could.
About two weeks after her first scan she was in her own hospital bed.
"My wife saved my life so she's my hero now."
They learned about living donors.
Lisa could donate part of her liver to her husband, and it’s now growing inside them both. "It felt like I was able to give him something that changed his life."
Now, almost two months after surgery he’s back to life, back to the small things like tumbling practice.
"Everything… Everything matters,” Jamie said.
And while he and his wife thought they were close before, now they’re inseparable.