Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Are you registered??


Today I had the pleasure of going to see a friend, a friend that I have not seen in a long time. I have not seen her since Bubba’s passing and I knew that the news of his passing hit her hard. I walked into her hospital room and the second she saw me she started to cry. I could see a range of emotions cross her face. I walked over and took her hand in mine and told her that it was OK. We sat and cried together about my boy and how much she loved him. She then went onto to tell me between strained breaths what was going on with her health.  She broke down as she told me that the Doctor had informed her that she might have to go on the heart transplant list. It broke my heart to see this young mother of two share her worries of not being here for her children. My heart broke as a friend knowing that there was nothing that I could do but hold her hand; tell her how much I love her, and that she was in my prayers.  I told her about my brave sweet Bubba and that even after death he blessed the life of many with his organ donations. I explained the great satisfaction and pride that Hubs and I felt knowing that our sweet boy was blessing the lives of others that needed the gift of these life sustaining organs so desperately.  I left her with a picture of my sweet boy and reassured her that he was watching over her, that he sent me to her. After more tears and hugs I said my good byes and made my way home. I have not been able to stop thinking about this friend all afternoon.

I have a question for you my family, friends, blog readers, and those of you that

I have never even met ……

ARE YOU A REGISTERED ORGAN DONOR????

And if not……

WHY NOT???

About a month after Bubba’s passing I was connected with the mother of Ruby Jane. In an email she had some questions for me after learning about our decision to donate Bubba’s organs. 

Julie,
I am so deeply sorry that you have to be without your sweet Collin. I few friends sent me over to your blog that week. I was so heartbroken for you, reading your words, knowing in some degree, how your heart must be feeling. I couldn't help but smile to hear that you guys donated some of his organs. What a little hero he is! I hoped and prayed for a family like yours to make a choice like that to save Ruby's life. Was organ donation something your family had talked about before you guys were in that situation? I am so interested in when and why families make that choice, because I think it can help other families make that choice before something happens.”
 

So, I thought I would share with you all today why discussing and registering for organ donation ahead of time is so important.

Hubs and I discussed whether or not we would donate Bubba’s organs many times before his passing. We were not sure if any of them would even be viable but we both knew in our hearts that our sweet Bubba would want us to donate his organs if and when the day came. The conversations were awkward and uncomfortable. I mean really….Who wants to discuss these kind of things?? Here’s the thing y’all, we have not only had this hard discussion about Bubba but we have had it about ourselves and our sweet girl as well. This might seem crazy…. seeing as how the three of us are all healthy BUT we have seen all too often with friends that things can happen to us or our loved ones when we least expect it.  We wanted  want to feel prepared.
 

We thought we had an idea of how hard the minutes and hours after Bubba’s passing would be BUT what we had pictured couldn’t have ever prepared us for the reality. It was impossible to think clearly let alone make huge decisions like whether or not to donate Bubba’s organs. So, when the call came letting us know that there were indeed viable organs that could be donated we knew right away what we WANTED to do. I have to admit {and if you read THIS post then you know} that there was a bit of an emotional struggle not because we didn’t want to donate his organs but because we wanted vengeance against the doctor in question.  Here’s the thing…. It was a hard decision, no doubt about that, but since we had already discussed organ donation and what we thought Bubba would want us to do ahead of time  it made the decision  to not be angry that much easier.

 
We have been blessed to make several little friends that have been the recipients of life saving organ donations. It is wonderful to see their smiling faces as they take on the world with their second chance in life. It warms my heart to know that Bubba gave that gift to someone, to their family.

 
We made the decision AHEAD OF TIME to go a step further and donate parts of our boy for research at the National Institute of Health, where Bubba has been followed since he was three years old. We learned early on in our visits that the research being done would most likely not benefit our boy but would hopefully benefit another child one day in the future. So, we made the decision to donate to help further the research of Trichothiodystrophy.
 

Here is the reality … none of us are getting out of this world alive. It is inevitable that at one point in time we will all pass from this life to the next. God is in control of the how and when, even if we don’t understand or like that part of the deal. So, here is my question to you….. If you know that it is going to happen…

 Why not talk about it???

Why not make the decision ahead of time to be the Hero in someone else’s life?  

Why not discuss a way to bring some hope and peace into your life after the death of a child??
 

 Why not???

 
Yes, it is hard and uncomfortable BUT it can also be beautiful and peaceful, it can be empowering at a time when you feel completely powerless.
 

 
For more information on Organ donation please go HERE.
 

If you are a registered organ donor I want to hear about it!!!!

{Leave me a comment and tell me why you chose to register.}
 

If you know someone that was an organ donor please share.

 
If you have been blessed by an organ donation please share.

 
BY DOING SMALL ACTS OF KINDNESS WE CAN DO GREAT THINGS!!!!

 

6 comments:

Kenny said...

I am!! Actually, my Ruby Jane wristband arrived today so I was already wearing it as I sat down to read this. I am a registered organ donor simply because I don't have any good reason not to be. What an amazing gift to be able to give someone else. I don't know the pain of losing a child, and I hope I never do, but if I were in that situation I would hope that I would want to do anything possible to make sure that another mother didn't have to feel that same pain.

Ani said...

I LOVE this post. It is so honest, and really an important topic. Thank you so much for writing this, and sharing your thoughts and feelings about organ donation!

tahnie said...

last week I celebrated 18 years since my life saving kidney transplant! :)
http://www.ahappygirl.com/2012/10/frogs-dinosaurs-organ-donation.html

The Gray Family said...

I am a donor! I figure if I am dead I don't need them anymore :>) And if it was my husband or child, to know that part(s) of them are living on and blessing the lives of others would be a great comfort I imagine? Of course, talking about it in theory and reality are 2 different things, but that's where I stand for now :>) And good for you for getting out to the pumpkin patch, one more mountain you have made it over!

Anonymous said...

I am an organ donor. Honestly just seems like the right thing to do.

Rachel said...

My story started with my mom.

Long before an organized organ donor program was started in our state, there was a paper attached to the back of drivers licenses for "special notes".

In her own writing, my mother had carefully written, "my ears to my daughter".

I still cry when I think of it.

To be part of passing on the life God has given you... amazing. I'm a registered organ donor :)