‘‘I think being scared is typical, not matter what you are having done,’’ said Gary.
After the operation, they shared a recovery room, and later, a regular room.
He had to stay in the hospital for three days and she stayed for five. They said they were told that is also typical.
Gary is still on an anti-rejection drug, but is doing very well. He said he is off most of the drugs doctors had him on.
They said when they had finally both returned home, their mothers and other family members, including her sisters, helped until they recovered fully.
‘‘We couldn’t have done it without them,’’ said Debbie. ‘‘They were amazing. Everyone should have people like them to help afterward. You really need it.’’
It’s obvious that Gary and Debbie Bulman’s love goes deeper than chocolates or flowers, and they say they weren’t sure what they'll do for Valentine’s Day this year, because everything else they could give each other now seems so trite.
‘‘I guess we'll just celebrate the fact that he’s here and that we are best friends,’’ said Debbie.
‘‘I'll tell you though, the best gift someone could give someone else is to be a donor,’’ said Gary. ‘‘It would mean so much to someone you love, but it would also mean the world to a stranger. It’s the gift that keeps giving.’’
They said maybe sometime in the future they'll take a second honeymoon, but can’t afford it at this point.
‘‘Even that couldn’t top this, though,’’ said Gary, who smiled across the table at his best friend.