Singapore mum who donated liver to dying baby was scared she would never see her own child again
“I don’t know what made me do this, but when I saw this innocent baby facing death, I knew I had to do something."
She left home that day with mixed feelings. What if she never came back? Would she ever see her three-year-old son again?
She was well aware of the risks of being a liver donor. Death is one of the complications. Permanent loss of the gall bladder, a reality.
And yet, Ms Lau went ahead. For something told her she had to save the life of a six-month-old baby, who was suffering from liver failure.
“I don’t know what made me do this, but when I saw this innocent baby facing death, I knew I had to do something.”
Singapore Mum Saves the Life of a Baby Suffering from Liver Failure
It was when his family was visiting relatives in Malaysia that they realised that six-month-old Jayden was very sick. His skin and the white of his eyes had a yellow tinge to them. He had jaundice, and diarrhoea several times a day.
The family rushed back to Singapore to see a doctor, only to discover that the baby’s liver was failing rapidly. The only thing that could save him now was a liver transplant.
Desperate to save her baby’s life, mummy Kelly Law posted several appeals online for a donor. She and her husband were unfortunately found not to be good matches for their baby.
When Ms Lau came across the appeal, it brought back many sad memories. Memories of a 10-year-old girl losing her mother to liver cancer. The pain of losing her own baby to stillbirth four year back, when she was six months pregnant.
As she told Channel NewsAsia, “To be honest, at this point, I am not afraid of death anymore. And if I could save this baby, I would have lived my life without regrets.”
She contacted Jayden’s mummy, and by the next morning, was having a series of tests done to determine if she was a suitable donor.
As fate would have it, she proved to be a perfect match.
A Life Saved
Though the liver has the ability to regenerate, the loss of her gall bladder meant that Ms Lau had to be cautious about her food intake for the rest of her life.
And apart from the numerous risks to the donor, there was no guarantee that the recipient would survive.
And so, on June 19, a seven and a half hour operation took place. It was a success. After eight days in the ICU, Jayden was finally transferred to a general ward on June 27.
Mummy Kelly Law couldn’t be more thankful.
She tells Channel NewsAsia, “They said he did not have the strength to cry or react like babies do, and that was not a good sign. I felt my heart sink. Thankfully, now when we show him his toys, he reaches out his hands. He’s getting better, day by day.”
She knows that it wouldn’t have been possible if it weren’t for one brave mum’s selfless act.
“An act that is unimaginable for someone not related by blood.
“I told her that I don’t know how to thank her enough for this. She replied that this is the work of fate and we don’t have to dwell on it. All she wanted was for Jayden to grow up healthily and be a filial son.
“I said that Jayden will have to be filial to her too because she is the one who gave him a second chance at life.”
Recovery and Recuperation
Ms Lau is also recovering well at home. Kelly has engaged a confinement nanny to cook nutritious food for her.
Her family, friends and company have been hugely supportive of her decision to donate her liver. Looking back, she still can’t believe she did something so impulsive and “crazy”.
“Thinking back, I don’t know why I did it. I surprised even myself,” she tells Channel NewsAsia.
“Anyone can do it. It’s just whether they are willing to give it a shot. We don’t only have to help people who are related to us.”
Here’s hoping that little Jayden recovers soon.
Source: Channel NewsAsia