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Monday, November 8, 2010

This Is Why...

I know, I know-two posts in one day.  I am just amazed by the wealth of information and stories out there on the "net".  Today I was taking a mental break at work and came across this story on another blog.  A woman in NY who recently gave her Kidney altruistically (meaning non-directed, the way I plan to) received a letter in the mail from her recipient.  Here are some excerpts:

On Saturday, October 23rd, I pulled an envelope from my mailbox, postmarked from Bakersfield, CA. I barely had a moment to retrieve it from the box before my heart and eyes poured tears of joy. My hands shaking, my eyes crying and my heart filling with purpose. I haven't cried that hard since Ricky Martin came out of the closet. It was ridiculous and had I been in front of an audience, I would have died of embarrassment. It took about 3 minutes before I could even open it, I was admiring her handwriting and my mind was buzzing with curiosity as to what was inside. Quite honestly, I didn't care. She could have inserted a coupon for a free car wash and signed her name and I would have been satisfied. Just the very thought of receiving contact from her was very emotional for me. I had been waiting and wanting, but truly feeling like it might not ever happen.

I pulled out the notebook paper folded neatly inside and out popped a small photo of her taken with her husband and daughter. So, again, the tears were flowing like a river and I'm gasping for air. Look! - it's my recipient, there she is with my kidney inside of her!  She's real, and that's her family right there in front of my eyes! I can't believe it's real and that this is the person that is living freely with my crazy little bean inside of her. Unbelievable!

Her letter so beautifully scripted, so precise and elegant, so gracious and kind, thoughtful and caring. It was so much more than I ever had expected.

             "...you donating your healthy kidney to me has given me 
              a second chance at living a longer, more healthy, and 
              more fulfilled life. You, Angela are my 'Angel' and I 
              will always hold on to that."


              "...recovery for me has been going well. My labs have
               been great and the doctors are happy with my new 
               kidney function."


               "...know how grateful and thankful I am for the best 
               gift I could receive... your donation was the beginning 
               of a chain that will save so many other lives - may 
               God bless you abundantly for your act of kindess."


Two pages of sincere gratitude and honest thoughts that mean more to me than I ever imagined. After reading this, I now know that this was a big deal -  a very big deal. It's really real and I am amazed that I am sitting here today in New York, and my kidney is 2,861 miles on the other side of this country providing a new lease on life inside a woman that I have never met. It has finally hit me and this entire journey that all along seemed so simple is now so much more. I am thrilled and filled, with emotion. I am blessed and proud to have given this gift. I am so very excited to begin a beautiful connection with this woman that will forever be a part of me, this woman named Julia.

Again I am asking you, the reader, to please just entertain the thought for a moment as to how easy and possible it is to donate your healthy kidney to another that so desperately needs it.  I encourage you all to at the very least consider the conversation with yourself. You can't imagine how meaningful this experience is, and how little sacrifice you are making to provide someone with a much deserved quality of life that most of us take for granted.

This is why. Even if I never know who, or why or how it turns out...this is why.  Its for all the Julias and Bobs and Sallys and their parents, siblings, friends and kids.  And that's all I have to say about that.

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