An open letter to the man living with my kidney-
I knew right away, the day I saw the Facebook post, that I could be a kidney donor-your kidney donor. It would be a while before I convinced my family that my decision was rational though. Who gives their kidney to a stranger?
I moved to Cincinnati about 9 years ago, after meeting my wife through mutual friends. We have been foster parents for almost 8 years and through that process we met our children, Delilah- 8, and Benit and Clayton, who are both 4 years old. They are the loves of our lives. As a second generation foster parent, I understand this experience to be part of who I am, at my soul.
The decision to be a living organ donor was not in-spite of having children, it was because of them. I truly believe you get back from the world all that you put in. I want my children to grow up with their eyes wide-open to all of the opportunities to shape the world around them. I want them to be compassionate and confident, and to understand that sometimes when you make yourself vulnerable you invite those around you to experience your love.
Though we have never met, I think of you often. I think of the other donors and recipients I have met at check-ups. I pray for the names on yard signs and t-shirts and other Facebook posts – people waiting for a kind stranger. Our experience has changed me.
I may have left the hospital with one less kidney, but I came home with a bigger heart.
“Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgement that something else is more important than fear.”