When I last donated blood, I received a 7 gallon mug. (No, it doesn't hold 7 gallons, but that's how much has been drawn from my veins over the past 11 or so years.) When I was in the recovery area, there was a lovely woman in her 40's, Tracy, speaking with the others seated there. In January she had been the recipient of a donated kidney, and the story behind it is touching and amazing.
Tracy has polycystic kidney disease, an inherited disorder. Her condition worsened, and the only hope was for a kidney transplant. Her 20-something son created a Facebook page in hopes of finding a match for her. Dozens of people volunteered to have their blood tested for compatibility. Jeff, a man she had known casually when they were students in high school drove to the blood center in RI from CT, and was the perfect match. Though it had been over 30 years since they had seen each other, this hero, with full support from his wife and children, chose to donate a kidney to Tracy. The transplant was done in January, and the donor quickly recovered and has no restrictions. Tracy is doing great, thanks to Jeff, who literally saved her life.
This ties in nicely with this week's topic for the student advisories (small groups of students who meet regularly with a staff member to focus on character development), which is Thanking Everyday Heroes. We'll be talking about people who unselfishly make a difference - perhaps a school custodian, a police officer, a teacher, a veteran, a neighbor - and writing them letters of thanks. I'll be sharing the story of Tracy and her real-life hero, Jeff.
Summer Flies is finally off the queue and on the needles. Actually, I just have the ruffled border left. People rave about the pattern with good reason. It's fast and fun and beautiful; I can't wait to see it blocked.