Donate Life

My sister is a registered nurse.  She got a job at an organization called One Legacy about 2 or 3 years ago.  All I knew for a while was that she helped somewhere in the process of getting organs from patients who were declared brain dead, to patients that were waiting in desperate need.  She deals with the “getting” end of the business instead than the “giving” side, so you can imagine she has some really uplifting stories for the Thanksgiving table.  Not…  But she has been able to scare my kids into doing things like looking both ways before they cross the street and not climbing on their dresser.  So, that’s handy.

For awhile I didn’t know much about what she did, because let’s face it, her side is depressing.  And it kinda freaked me out.  We had a conversation one night when we were both spending the night at my older sister’s house and it got so detailed that I made her sleep on the pull out couch with me because I was afraid I was going to have nightmares!

However, things have changed since then.

Remember, Lauren?  Well, she got her new heart and while she still has some ups and downs, she’s doing really well.  Her heart was a miracle, and a life saver.  During the process of waiting for Lauren’s heart I was constantly asking my sister if she knew of anything out there on the horizon that would help Lauren.  She obviously couldn’t tell me any details, but occasionally I would get a text that would just say, “PRAY!” and I would.  And, eventually Lauren’s heart came.  And that, my friends, will go down in the record books and one of the happiest days in my life!

And while my sister wasn’t involved in the case that led to Lauren receiving her heart, she knew about it through me, and I think it was nice for her to be on the happy side for a change.

I do realize that the other side it out there.  I realize that there is a mother out there who lost her baby less than a year ago, and is completely and utterly heartbroken.  I cannot even begin to imagine the anguish of being that mother, and I’m not going to pretend that I do.  That’s my worst fear, that something would happen to one of my kids.  I just don’t know if it’s something that you ever completely heal from.

What I do know about that mother is that she was faced with making a very difficult choice, probably the hardest choice she had to make in her entire life.  And she chose to donate her baby’s organs in order to give life to someone else’s baby.  And for that, I will be forever grateful.

Before all this happened with Lauren I don’t know that I would have made the same choice.  I think seeing your child die is hard enough, but thinking about surgeons operating on them and making them less of their original self, is really hard to wrap your brain around.  And in a moment of tragedy, I’m not sure I would’ve been able to do that.  Now, however, I get it.

I’ve seen the other side.  I’ve prayed with the other mother who desperately needed a miracle.  I’ve fasted with her family pleading with God for a way out.  I’ve felt the helplessness and the knowing that God is the only one who is really in control here.  And because of all of that, because of Lauren and her amazing story, I would give the gift of life if I ever had that choice.

Why am I saying all of this?

Because.  Lauren got her heart, but there is another baby girl in the same hospital that is waiting for her’s.  And there is probably a little boy somewhere in there, too.  And in a different hospital there is more than likely a teenager who is waiting for a set of lungs.  And in a different hospital there is a woman who needs a liver.  These people are everywhere, just waiting.  In fact, right now there are 112,150 people just waiting.  Because, besides praying for a miracle, that’s all they can do.

So, I thought I would use my little (emphasis on little) corner of the blogosphere to raise some awareness and hopefully give you a different perspective.  I know it’s a little bit morbid to think about what’s going to happen to you when you die, but you can make a difference.  You can make a huge difference!  You could save a life.

If you live in California, you can register online here.  If you live outside of California, you can register here.

Think about it.  Pray about it.  And then, go register to be a life giver.

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2 responses

  1. We are all organ donors in our house as well. I feel life has a purpose and if in my death I can give someone else life (with my organs) then that is the ultimate gift. When I had pregnancy complications with my 3rd, the cord had formed abnormally where vessels that were supposed to be inside of the cord had formed outside. We didn’t know what we were going to get or if our son was going to survive at all. So we talk to our OBGYN about it and had him put on a donor list just in case, because we felt his life had purpose even if it meant not with us. Thankfully everything turned out ok and he is perfect and wonderful. I still keep his ultrasound picture on my fridge as a reminder that nothing in life is that bad.

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