My sister-in-law, Claudia, has a rare condition that, over time, has caused damage to her liver. She had been placed on the transplant list and was patiently waiting for a match. As we were leaving for the airport to head to Florida a couple weeks ago, I received an email from my brother: they found a liver! As we were traveling and having fun on our vacation, Claudia was undergoing transplant surgery. Needless to say, she and my brother and their three children were constantly on my mind.
Thankfully, the surgery was a great success, and Claudia is recovering at home with her new liver. I'm so thankful for the wonderful medical care she has received, and I'm also grateful to the family who decided to donate a loved one's organs.
I have always maintained the position that my body should be donated for either transplant or research. My mom set an example by telling us she was planning on donating her body to a medical school after her death. What an amazing way to contribute to humanity! My family has always known my wishes, but Claudia's recent journey as a transplant recipient has brought the topic to the forefront of our minds. We've had the conversations again, and I've confirmed that I'm registered as a donor in my state.
My brother recently shared the following TED talk. It's incredibly powerful. I'm in awe of this woman, who was able to find wonderful meaning in her son's extremely short life. It's only 10 minutes - watch it, and be moved. And then if you're not already, think about becoming a donor yourself.