Gordon Ryan has battled hard with health struggles for much of his adult life and is fortunate to be alive. Born with Cystic Fibrosis, he found himself fighting an uphill battle for most of his twenties with the life-threatening illness. Despite having being relatively well up to then, the deterioration was swift and unforgiving.
Having completed a Law degree, Gordon was working with a legal firm in Dublin and establishing a career in Law along with other ambitions. Those hopes and plans were scuppered by the devastating impact of Cystic Fibrosis. Frequent hospitalisation and repeated lung infections soon led to reduced quality of life, oxygen use and a total loss of independence.
In his words “it felt like my best years were being taken from me and I had no control over it. It seemed so unfair and senseless. All I could control was my attitude towards the dire situation and it was this alone which ultimately proved my saving grace”.
By now he was on a double lung transplant waiting list. According to him, “ it was merely existing not living”. Fortunately the call came after three and a half years hanging on and Gordon received his new lungs.
Since getting his second chance life is transformed. Rather then returning to the legal world , Gordon is now following his heart and pursuing a full time Masters in Journalism (DCU). In 2016 he spoke about what receiving a transplant means at the National launch of Organ Donor Awareness Week in Dublin’s Mansion House as well as The Operating Nurses Theatre Conference and the Law Society.
He passionately believes it is vital to get the message out that the gift of organ donation saves lives as well as giving people back a new life. In his view, holding on to one’s hopes and dreams however unlikely, in the face of adversity is instrumental to cope with life’s swings and roundabouts. Gordon is currently working towards launching an Organ Donation Blog in the coming weeks.