Meeting the Recipient

December 10, 2019

Hello all. First off I want to apologize, I’m writing this post at the end of a long travel day. I’m out of town on business but I still wanted to update here about some news.

Yesterday I got a call from the hospital asking my availability for the surgery; they wanted to check my availability before reaching out to the recipient’s family or the surgeons’. I told them sometime around Christmas would be best since we’d already be in the area, but that I’d kept my schedule fairly clear in preparation for the surgery. The coordinator said he’d check with the recipient’s family and the surgeons and be back to me in a couple of days with the finalized date.

Several years ago, the recipient’s family set up a Facebook group to try to help her find a kidney. I don’t use Facebook, but I’ve been following the group since May when I first found out about it. Every now and again I check in to see how she is doing. After I got the call yesterday asking for my availability, I kept checking back more frequently to see when they found out that I was finally approved. Last night the recipient’s mom made a post about how a donor had been found.

For a while, I wrestled with whether or not I wanted to meet the recipient and her family. For whatever reason, I don’t take praise well, and I don’t like receiving it. Even though I know I’m doing a huge act of kindness that I would praise anyone else for, I don’t like receiving it myself, even for donating my kidney. Or, at least, it’s not easy for me to accept praise. That fact made me apprehensive about wanting to reach out to the recipient’s family and meeting them before or after the surgery. I’ve thought a lot about it over the past few months. But I came to the conclusion that I did want to meet them before the surgery. Partly because it would be good for me, and partly because if our roles were reversed, I’d want to know the person giving their kidney to my child.

So, after I saw that post in the Facebook group, I decided to reach out to the recipient’s mom via Facebook Messenger. It was hard for me to compose a message, I’m usually pretty awkward with people I don’t know but this was a different situation entirely, so I had my wife help me. We had an exchange and we’ve decided to meet up sometime during the Christmas holiday before the surgery. After such a long road, it’ll be nice to finally meet them as an approved kidney donor. Also, coincidencidentally, they live in the town next to where my wife grew up and where we’ll be spending the Christmas holiday!

Additionally, the Facebook post I mentioned said that the donor coordinator said the surgery will likely take place in early January. I should hear back in the next couple of days with a definitive date. I’ll be sure to update here when that happens.


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