I’m not a big news watcher. I have tried to focus a little bit of attention to the world around me lately since we are in the midst of a very historical election period, but generally, I do not turn on any of the major networks at 6:00. My news comes from E!, the Hollywood network, and I use it to blindly escape my reality and bask in the nonsense of millionaires who hop on private jets and vacation in places I can’t pronounce.
But last night, I was home before the end of the nightly news, so I picked up the book I started the day before, and turned on the TV. I really just wanted it for background noise, and began reading, but lowered my book almost immediately when the final story of the evening began unfolding.
A young woman, who had tragically lost her father ten years ago, had tracked down the man who had, through a life-saving transplant, received her father’s heart. She was getting married and asked that this man – who was given a second chance at life through the gift of her own family’s generosity and difficult decision making in the wake of tragedy – walk her down the aisle at her upcoming wedding. She wouldn’t have her dad present to do the honors, but she could, miraculously, have his heart.
It was such a beautiful story, and it reminded me what a rare gift transplantation truly is. Whether the transplant is received through living donation, like my kidney, or through a deceased donor, like my son’s liver and kidney, it is an absolute miracle that we are able to have a second chance to make a difference, improve this world, and live happy.
My search for happiness is eternal and I will continue reaching for nuggets of knowledge to help me get closer to my baby in Heaven. If all I can do is appreciate that we as humans have the curiosity, will, and fortitude to help one another survive, then I know someday I will find him again.