Friday, November 18, 2011

Fantasy Land Friday - From Transplant to Triathlon

I originally came up with the idea of a Fantasy Land Friday post to identify all those things I wish, hope, yearn, and/or envision for my life. For instance, a clean house or a completed to-do list. Anyways, you get the idea. But, this first Fantasy Land Friday post will focus on something a bit different. I don't spend a ton of time thinking about Bean's long-term future. I don't know if that is normal or a result of fear or denial or just the result of my seeming inability to plan ahead for anything. I also think that its difficult at this point because she's only two and I don't know what her interests or talents are yet. But, I'm sure that part of it is fear of the future and what it will bring.  Because of that, I love stories like this one:

Transplant recipient in second Ironman - Sherwood Park News - Alberta, CA

There are a few things I love about his story.  First, his transplant was back in 1986, which is pretty early in the transplant history, so long-term survival was usually predicted to be shorter than today.  He says that they gave him 10 years, and now, almost 30 years later he is competing in Ironman triathlons!  The second thing I love about his story is his willingness to be a "guinea pig" so-to-speak for figuring out the amount of stress a transplanted heart can take.  I would love for Bean to do sports - not necessarily Ironmans, but some kind of sport and if she decides she wants to do a sport seriously, I would love for her to have confidence in being able to do that.  The last thing that stood out for me was his recognition that many recipients never get the chance to meet their donor family.  The media typically covers stories that include both the recipients and the donor families.  Everyone asks about the donor...and its strange to know absolutely nothing...and hard to explain, but totally understandable from my perspective.  But, perhaps at some point in the future, we will come to know more even if we never meet the donor family.  And even if we never know more, I will always hold that family and their angel donor in my heart.  And I will try to make sure that Bean does the same.  I could not help but think that a boys suicide 30 years ago has given this man a chance to do amazing things and something that seemed hopeless and senseless has become something so full of hope and so meaningful.

So, here is something inspirational that I will definitely have Bean read in the future.  Its a great story - hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

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