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My Journey from Being a Liver Donor to a Fitness Enthusiast
Abhishek Deshmukh

Yes you read it right, I donated liver to my father, but that did not stop me from resuming my gym or the rigorous fitness regime I was so accustomed to.

When I was told that my Dad was going to need a liver transplant and that a living persona can also donate part of the liver, my first thought was if this is what it takes to save my father’s life then I am ready to do it and give my father a chance to live a healthy life again.

With Dad in happier times.

My parents of course did not think they were going to allow me to do anything like that. Of course they were worried and they absolutely did not want me to donate my liver. They wanted to wait for a cadaver donor and we all agreed to that and waited for almost a year but later it was high time and we couldn’t wait so I had to convince them to allow me to donate the liver. So finally when it was clear that it was not wise to lose any more time, they reluctantly agreed. They knew that I was mentally very strong.

They knew I had been spending a lot of time in the hospital beside my father for one and half year as he was admitted many times in that period. All these episodes of rushing my father in and out of the hospital, seeing the pain and panic, blood samples, injections, had kind of prepared me. I had lost the fear of hospitals. Also by this time I knew all the doctors very well and also knew how good they were at their work.

Of course it does not mean that I did not worry at all. I was worried if I will be able to get back the life as usual. Yes, I was worried a lot that my physical activities might be stopped. I love running and doing workout as I am a fitness freak. But I later talked to Dr. Vinay Kumaran and he explained me everything about what all things I can do, and for how long I will be on bed. Once I was determined, I became very careful. Of course I took all the precautions that I was asked to, like I ate only healthy food, avoided junk food or hotel food, I also checked that I don’t lose weight and don’t fall sick which can harm my liver. I studied everything on the internet about how to keep my liver healthy.

Come to think of it now, all the days are a blur of activity to me. Of course when finally the day came, I was admitted 1 day before surgery i.e. 25th May 2016 and on 13th day post surgery was discharged i.e. 6th June 2016. Of course there were a few complications and I even suffered a minor heart attack, but I survived all that. I was home for a month of June, did not go out. Later month of July & August I began to go down in my society but always had my face mask on and wore full clothes. I was in the last year of my college and had to quit my studies for the surgery as my exams and operation dates clashed. After a year in May 2017 I completed my graduation.

My father did not survive after the surgery. As he was suffering from multiple organ failure. Liver transplant was successful but maybe the luck was not on our side. I tried my best to do whatever a son can do.

I was back home resting and doing nothing for 9 months, only taking rest and recovering. In these nine months many people told me that I cannot do anything physical activity for rest of my life. So, I DECIDED TO GIVE THESE PEOPLE A STRONG ANSWER.
I joined gym on 1st March 2017 and began with my strength training with beginners workout routine at Ikon Fitness Gym (Airoli) and gaining some weight with proper diet plan provided to me by trainers at the gym.
For 6 months i.e March to August I had put on good weight and also had some good strength then I challenged myself to do a body transformation within 30 days. Began my transformation on 1st September 2017.
I needed 100% focus and dedication on this. I WAS NOT GOING BACK FROM THIS NOW. I trained hard, fought back all the pain, and I HAD MY TROPHY AND ANSWER TO ALL THOSE PEOPLE WHO SAID I CAN’T DO IT.
I had my family support they trusted me and my all gym trainers who believed in me and help me. I would really thank them for this amazing fit lifestyle I got it would have not been possible without them.

Wound from the living donation surgery and now a fitness enthusiast.

Looking back, I always advice the one thing. “Don’t listen or talk to people (our elders in our society who have so called seen the world). They have no clue what end stage organ failure is and why it is worth taking a risk to be a living donor. They just talk and don’t have any idea of what situation you are going through. Always talk to people who have experienced liver transplant or any other surgery or best people to talk about anything are the doctors. Listen to your doctors, they will not lead you the wrong way. “