32. Have a Little Future: The Epilogue

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                                                 Eight months later

I gave Cole one condition if he wanted to run the London Marathon; I had to run it with him, to which he joyfully accepted.

Once accepted, Cole and I became this overly cheesy couple who went running together. At first, we didn’t get a lot of running done. I proved that I could only run for ten minutes before giving up and Cole proved that the bounce of my boobs as I ran was much more fun to watch rather than running. Shamefully, Cole was a lot fitter than me to begin with, despite my obvious distractions. We took it very slow and steady to begin with and soon we were running 1, 5, 10 miles at a time. I used to panic when I saw Cole heaving and panting after finishing, but he reassured me he felt okay. In fact, the first time, I was nearly in tears seeing him lying back on the floor trying to breathe, but I’ve settled since.

I nuzzle my face against Cole’s neck to rouse him from his slumber, before feeling him through his pants to see him smirking. I gently skim my fingers over the fabric to wake him. Cole opens one eye and shakes his head.

Cole’s going to the doctors today to see if he’s going to be well enough to run the London Marathon next week. His last check up showed his heart was being put under some strain from the running in recent weeks, which is far from ideal. I know Cole is desperate to run it, but if the doctor says no, then I will put my foot down and insist he doesn’t run.

After finally waking up with all that teasing, Cole is driving us to the hospital. It’s safe to say, Cole and I spend our lives in and out of hospital, both for my career, and to check his health. Though at the beginning of the year, we were in hospital for an entirely different reason altogether; for a happier, more exciting reason, the birth of Alex and Ben’s baby.

Time seems to have flown by ever since I met the organ recipients for the first time. I remember Ben had called at 7am in the morning that Alex had gone into labour and that she had given birth to their baby. They had a beautiful little girl, weighing six pounds, five ounces and wanted us to come and see her. Of course, we jumped at the chance. We eagerly made our way through to see the new little addition, their baby girl who they hadn’t named yet. Once in the hospital room, we saw Alex cradling their new daughter and I knew there was no better job than to be a midwife and see the elated faces of new parents afterwards. Alex beamed when she saw me and Cole and I were allowed to have a cuddle with the new little one. I remember it just like yesterday seeing them share a look before asking me if they could use Hope as their little girl’s middle name. They wanted to call her Naomi Hope Healey. I had confusedly asked why, when they explained that my dad had given them the chance to be a family and that I was integral in making that happen. I just sat and cried when they explained that, I was an emotional mess they wanted to thank me in a way and in the sweetest way possible.

Now Naomi is born, I am receiving many more letters through, updating Cole and I on her progress and sending the sweetest pictures through. Similarly, I am in contact with Tommy a couple of Skype sessions a month and I regularly call Florence and have met with her several times this year.

All of these people are still in my life and it doesn’t look like our connection is going to fade anytime soon, which is inexplicably wonderful.

Cole nervously bounces his foot the whole way to the hospital and I know he’s as worried as he looks. This means a lot to him, and I don’t know which way it’ll go. Cole has done really well and has managed to get up to half a marathon but no more, compared to me who has pushed it to about 19 miles. I’m worried that the strain will be too much on his heart seeing as he hasn’t been able to run as far as he needs to run

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