A Thanksgiving Transplant Story
“The joy we feel has little to do with the circumstances of our lives and everything to do with the focus of our lives.”
—Russell M. Nelson (born 1924)
This quote couldn’t have been more necessary for my day today.
There should be a rule against rainy Mondays in general, and particularly for Mondays after a long holiday weekend. I woke up this morning (even though I usually love rain) to a heavy downpour outside, making it all the more difficult to drag myself out of bed.
Let’s just say I should’ve stayed in bed. I woke up at 5am to Hawk (my boy dog) literally just having a pee on the carpet by my bed. Why?!? Then as I was making my morning coffee, the mug I went to grab slipped out of my hand and shattered on the floor. Awesome. Thirdly, I spilled coffee on my white couch which thankfully came out, whew!
The day progressively became crazier once I arrived at work, which I assumed would happen after being away for 5 days. It wouldn’t be Monday without a touch of hysteria! The cool thing though, we’ve officially broken our record for the most heart transplants performed in a year! And THIS, this is why I do what I do, with the incredible team I am surrounded by. THIS makes it all worth it! I hope this helps paint the world of transplant and shed some light on my life outside of the blog. This is usually why I don’t post as much on here, but now it makes sense right?
There is no greater love than to give to others upon your last breath, such an amazingly selfless gift.
Here’s the link in case the video doesn’t load correctly: A Thanksgiving Transplant Story
Such an amazing story to share. I cannot stress enough the miracle of organ donation and the gift of life. If ever you have any questions, please feel free to send them my way!
And as I close my eyes tonight, I am reminded of my abundant blessings in life.. especially health, as i have had many issues off and on with my own. We commonly take for granted the ability to wake up the next day, say the things we meant to say yesterday or perhaps the chance for do-overs when we aren’t our best selves. As some of you may have gathered from my IG posts lately, my family was recently stricken with my cousin’s suicide. I have been slowly trying to pull together the pieces leftover from this horrible tragedy with the rest of my family. It pains me more than words can describe the loss of such an outstanding young man; a soldier and United States Army medic, a father, a husband, a brother, a son, a grandson – a human being. The memories I have with him and his two sisters along with my brother are something I now especially hold dear. We all were within years of age and lived one street apart. We were absolutely inseparable. My deepest gratitude and thanks goes out to every single one of you who have taken the time to reach out to me in support, love, and prayer.
Another (different) chapter of my life closed today and though I remain sad in the breakdown of the final chapters of that very meaningful relationship, I am thankful for the lessons learned and the ability to show that individual love. When things happen outside of my expectations or don’t work out, I remain convinced there is an explanation in God’s plan. There is always a reason for people coming in and out of your life, whether said reason is immediately apparent or not. God’s timing always has me in awe, especially when I know He is speaking to me loud and clear. For instance, the other day I decided I needed to get back into my daily devotional readings as I have felt more distant in my relationship with God than ever before (really need to get my tail back in church!). I opened my devotional, and there it was, louder than any message I could have prayed for or needed.. and so very accurate.
“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted; he rescues those whose spirits are crushed.” – Psalm 34:18
The relevance to my very situation(s) at hand literally had me dumb-founded, but also told me I was exactly where I was meant to be. Even though I was deeply missing someone very close to my heart, I realized this woven series of events is masterful in His plan and He would walk me through my pain and sadness. It’s hard to let go of people, no matter the reason: death, break-ups, moving away, etc.
Some people in medicine distance themselves from a belief in anything other than science, but God continues to be ever-present in the work I do. The work, the patients, the families, and the experiences all keep me grounded and grateful to be a part of something much bigger than myself.
If you take away anything from this mushy and slightly sappy post of mine, I hope this helps you value each day just a little bit more, and hold tight to those you love 🙂 And in the spirit of gratitude as we are near the conclusion of November, thank you all for this journey thus far.
Vanessa E. Luna
July 5, 2017 @ 12:05 pm
Loved reading this! I am an organ donor and i’ll admit, it was hard at first but I thought.. ok what happens when i’m no longer here? If i can leave any sort of legacy behind, it’d be to help someone else continue their life. i hope there are many others who can sign up to be a donor. It’s so important and definitely a selfless act. Thank you for posting this!
July 5, 2017 @ 5:56 pm
So thankful to hear when people are organ donors! You never know when it can save a life! Thank you Vanessa (that’s my mom’s name!) xoxo – Tara