Thursday, April 29, 2010
It's personal - just thought you should know.
As April draws to a close, I would be remiss if I didn't bring up something near and dear to my heart. Organ donation. It's a very personal thing for me and has affected my family several times over. I have personally seen how a living kidney transplant breathes life into a weakened body. How it brings color back into the skin. How it gives someone hope for tomorrow.
My father and sister both had kidney transplants in their 20s. My dad received a kidney from his brother when transplants were still new and being improved. He had that kidney for 31 years when cancer took him - not kidney disease. My sister had two transplants. One from her mother and after that one failed, one from our step-mother. Sadly, my sister died at age 35, leaving 3 children behind.
Now it gets really personal. The disease that both my dad and sister had is inheirited. I have it too. I wasn't diagnosed until I was 45. My doctor told me nine months ago that I would be on the list within a year. My last visit showed an improvement in my kidney function (something I was told wouldn't happen). I'll share my lifestyle changes with you in a future post.
I'm not worried about this disease. It is a part of my life, but it doesn't run my life. It tires me out but God gives me the energy to keep going.
Organ donation is something that most people don't think about. I do. I think about it every day. If you haven't checked it out, would you use this reminder to do so? Would you learn about it? You could make a big difference in someone's life.
Here are a few places to learn about donations:
Congressional Kidney Caucus
National Kidney Foundation
Thanks for allowing me to share. Tomorrow we'll look at something more cheerful.