As you all know I’m a huge advocate of organ donation and sharing my Dad’s story. National Donate Life Month is observed annually during the month of April. It commemorates and celebrates the countless lives affected by transplant and donation across the United States. Help raise awareness by sharing YOUR story or stories of people in your life who have been impacted by organ and tissue donation/transplantation. If you are not BUT have considered becoming an organ donor please do so. Not many people think about becoming a donor until it affects your life. I am guilty of this myself.
AWARENESS is so important to that patient (& family) who is on the waiting list. You never plan to need a transplant but when you are told that is your only way to continue living…you are eternally grateful beyond words for those people who took the time to become a donor.
I will always be grateful for the young lady and her family who gave my family hope of having a long life with my Dad. Sadly, her lungs were not viable enough for transplant and my Dad couldn’t wait another day. I always wonder if her family was told about my Dad…if they know how much hope they gave my family that day as we waited for his double lung transplant. Yes, we were scared. But, to know it was his shot at life again was such a blessing. One I will never forget. I hope and pray they knew my Dad, and our whole family, was extremely grateful that they gave us hope that day. We all got to be together one last time and THAT moment is what I like to focus on when the pain of losing him is too hard.
SHOW YOUR SUPPORT ON FRIDAY APRIL 21st!
WEAR YOUR BLUE & GREEN!!
Many times I get asked why I decided to start donating. Well, I have a couple of reasons.
#1 – My family is my everything and when my youngest son was in elementary school, a nurse told him his blood type was very special. She explained to him he had the universal type & he would be able to donate to EVERY ONE. Well, that nurses comment stuck with him throughout his childhood years. Every year I would be reminded that when he turned 16 he could start to give (with my permission). So, last year he turned 16 & eagerly waited for his High School to hold their first Blood Drive of the year. October 22, 2015 was the day. He had always asked me if I would give with him when the time came & of course I would do anything for him.
#2 – As many of you know my Dad passed away waiting for a double lung transplant. I would have done anything to be able to give him one of mine … but that isn’t possible. Organ donation has always been something I have supported but never became an official donor until 2014 when I spent many weeks living in the hospital with my Dad & family. The need of sick people was every where you turned and it really just pulled at my heart to do more. So, I became an official organ donor. BUT… I really wanted to help others NOW! I am healthy & blessed to be on earth so it was time to give more of myself. One of the easiest ways to do that is by donating blood. It’s quick & painless and can help save up to 3 lives with each donation (1 pint).
So, those are my reasons why I donate & why I feel it’s important to share my thoughts & experiences on the topic of donation with others. You really can change someones life.
Donating blood is really just as simple as depicted in the photo below. Find a local blood donation center & see about getting signed up today. If you are in the Mid-Michigan area I recommend going to www.miblood.org & setting up your appointment. There is a donation center at The Great Lakes Loon Baseball Stadium in Midland or look up one of the many blood drives they have going on. Most High Schools hold a few during the school year so check those out as well. If you are not in Michigan, please check into your local blood banks.
Once you decide to donate blood here are a few things you can do before to prepare.
If you have any questions about becoming a donor (organ or blood) please contact me. Donation is something I am very passionate about and would love to share more with you.