Miracles do happen

Garry Hertzberg.

Chris lived a beautiful life on the coast of South Africa and spent most of his days surfing the crests of crashing waves. Unfortunately, his youthful and fun life came to a halt when he discovered that he had kidney failure. His days of coastal bliss were replaced by three-hour journeys to the closest hospital for dialysis.

Chris became one of the thousands around the world who implored those around him to donate an organ. His wife would take him to the beach to stare at the waves and his failing body could hardly comprehend what was happening. He was convinced that he would never be able to surf again.

All of this changed when an old friend approached him and offered him the gift of life. This lady became his angel on earth as she offered him a second chance at a healthy life. She was willing to give him one of her kidneys.

However, the legal implications are far more complex than Chris anticipated. The law does not allow for altruistic donors to simply offer up their organs. Furthermore, the donor has to pass numerous medical tests in order to qualify as an appropriate donor. Permission needs to be obtained from the minister of health and it is these laws that have made organ donation quite tricky.

Luckily, Chris’ brave donor passed all of the tests and permission was obtained from the minister. On 26 May, Chris received a fully functioning, healthy kidney. This kidney will double in size and will function just as well as his two healthy kidneys previously did. Today, during Organ Donor Month, Chris is as healthy as ever and is surfing once again.

This fairy tale ending shows that we, as humans, have the overwhelming ability to offer life and hope to those around us. We all carry two bean-shaped organs within us, even though we only need one. It is as if our creator offered us a spare part with which we can offer hope to those in need.

Unless you have a religious objection, I encourage you to become an organ donor during Organ Donor Month.


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