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Monday, December 20, 2010

When the Charlies Come Around

Not the real Charlie
This past weekend after my action packed (not!) morning and early afternoon at Foothills, I had the pleasure of FINALLY getting away for some R&R with Charlie.  Back in October he surprised my by giving me a weekend away (dates to be determined) at a lovely little cabin resort in the Rockies. The cabin was wonderful, complete with a claw foot soaker tub and fireplace.  It was rustic but clean,  simple yet cozy. With all I've had on my plate lately with work, the occasional kidney related test and getting ready for Christmas it was perfectly timed.
I know what you are thinking-that's lovely Lauren, but what does this have to do with the "kidney thing"?Well it has to do with Charlie and the fact that when you have no TV, no distractions but great food, the mountains and the odd glass of wine, you finally get the chance to talk about the important stuff in your relationship.  And of course this subject came up.
As anyone who has read along from the beginning knows, Charlie did not approve of even the thought of this decision.  He was angry and would leave the room with any mention of it.  Days grew into a couple of weeks and I finally asked that he at least support me in this even if he doesn't like it.  From that point forward he started to do all I ever really wanted him to do in this situation: he listened.  Over time he began to joke about my magic kidneys and asked me if I had plans to join the Red Cross when this was all done (I was told by a male friend recently that this joking on Charlie's part was a true sign of acceptance). He also asked the odd question here and there, usually pertaining to an upcoming appointment.  I was very careful to answer just what was asked and not give too much information lest I scare him off the subject again. Every now and again I would drop a "Rainman" fact on kidney donation or something I heard about transplants on the news.
This past weekend I had the chance to ask him why he seemed accepting of it now when only weeks ago it made him so angry. He simply responded that I had provided him with a lot of information as to the risks and how important this is and that is is a logical guy and could see where it made sense to do it. For the first time I really felt like he is backing me 100% in this and I have to say it felt wonderful. It would have been hard to go ahead without his full support.
I don't know if its because it is a topic of interest for me so I'm more aware of it or if its a coincidence but there have been a few shows/news stories we've come across together while watching TV that have been on the subject of kidney donation (Law and Order SVU was one but I can't remember the others). It seems though that in all the media and stories we've seen/read, there is that person, like Charlie, who is against the idea of transplants, especially donating to a stranger.  The good news though is that in all the stories (either fiction or real life accounts), the Charlies come around. It just takes a little time, a few facts and they warm up to the idea.

So if you have a Charlie in your life, hang in there because odds are, he'll be in your corner rooting for you.

“We cannot do great things on this Earth, only small things with great love.”

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