Sadly, that’s an easy one to answer.
Growing up, my sister was my best friend. She was about three years younger than me and we didn’t have any of the usual sibling problems. No arguing, no stealing each others toys, no jealousy or any of that stuff. We just got along, perfectly.
When she was 14, she developed a problem with her kidneys and needed a transplant. Donating one of mine was a no-brainer. I didn’t even think twice, it was just clear from the outset that it was what would happen. We got to it as fast as possible, the transplant was conducted less than a week after she was diagnosed, which was a good thing and pretty much the only reason she had a chance at all, though it was still only 30% that she’d make it off the operating table. They knew there would be complications and I won’t go into details but there were some specific issues that would make it hard for her to wake up again.
The removal went well, I woke up just after she went under and I never had a problem since, health-wise. But as soon as I woke up I had a really horrible thought that didn’t even occur to me before- I had some Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups the day before. And Sasha had a massive peanut allergy. Bad peanut allergies can kill people who so much as touch the things. I was fine to eat them around her but this time part of me was about to be integrated into her. I had no clue if it was even a real problem or not, I didn’t know how kidneys work, I didn’t know how allergies worked, all I knew was I had a god damn peanut butter cup without even thinking about it.
I called the nurses and told them and made them rush to the doctor to warn him and I was worried sick, I could literally see my heartbeat go wild on the monitor next to me. It was the most horrible thing I ever felt, as if the worry was a slime coating me, stinging my skin, making my light headed and nauseous. The doctor came into my room and I hoped he would tell me it was no problem, peanut allergins don’t stay in your kidneys, my worries were absurd. That’s not what he told me. She had died during surgery.
In the shock of the moment, the first thing that hit me was a sense of denial. I reminded myself it was a slim chance of her surviving and that my damn candy might not have had anything to do with it. I needed, NEEDED to know that it wasn’t. I told the doctor about the candy and begged him to tell me if that was what killed her.
My greatest regret was not listening to a word he said in reply.
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