Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Letter Series Vol. 2 // A Letter To My Donor

Writing a letter to someone you don't know and thanking them for something of this magnitude is a hard task to tackle.

I think I've written a letter to someone I didn't know before. It was probably many years ago and in grade school a few times--a member of our military, a child overseas, etc--a designated pen-pal, if you will.

You probably remember those. The one thing I do know about you is you're around my age, so I'm assuming you remember handwritten letters and good ole snail mail. And after all of this time, of all of the countless letters I've written, if I could choose one to be handwritten, it would be this one.

Maybe eventually I can send you one through the donor registry, but until then I have a lot of work to do... so I guess I should focus there first.

But a day doesn't go by that I wonder who you are and what you're like.

Is she from the US?
Does she live in Germany?
Does she have kids?
What kinds of hobbies she like to do?
Does she want to meet me?
What did she think when she got a phone call saying she was a match?
Why did she decide to become a part of the registry?

I have so many questions and thoughts running through my brain about the kind of person you are.

But now that I've gone through with the transplant and parts of who you are becoming part of me, I wanted to write and really try to explain my thoughts, feelings and gratitude.

I've never dreamt I'd write a letter to you--whoever you are--and say the following, but here it goes:

Thank you for giving me a chance, a chance to live a longer life with my family and friends. 

Thank you for giving me an opportunity to make a difference in their lives. 

Thank you for saving me from being released from the gravity of this Earth too soon. 

Thank you for giving me something that is rightfully yours that was internally and scientifically made for you for your body, and sharing it with me to give me a chance to live longer.

Thank you for giving me hope. 

Thank you for giving my family hope and some peace of mind.

Thank you for taking the time to fill out the registry. Who would have ever thought that there are two people essentially made up of the same DNA--blood or whatever inside--and we've never even met? 

Thank you for taking time out of your life to do this for someone you don't know. It shows how unselfish and thoughtful you are.

Thank you for not passing up this opportunity to save someone's life. I hope that you will want to meet me one day, as I'd love to meet you.

Please never feel guilty if you never want to be contacted. I couldn't imagine giving something from your body--some of your anatomy--to save a stranger's life and finding out it didn't work. 

If that happens (it won't) but if it did, it's not your fault. You tried. You just happened to be the lucky person to have to the inside-goodies to match mine.

And that's what matters; you found that out and you've followed through donating your stem cells and  given me a fighting chance at life. There is nothing more I can ask for than that, truly.

Some people battling this disease don't even make it this far; they never make it into remission. I did it in one try. It seems like I'm supposed to go through this, right? Maybe we are supposed to meet and this is just the way we have to do it. 

Who knows what God has in store for us? 

What I do know is that I could NEVER express my gratitude for your act of kindness. I just wish there was someway I could give back or give back to the community for your act of selflessness. 

I wish I knew what I could do or what to say to you, but the truth is I don't. I don't know what to say. 

I'm sorry for that. 

The magnitude of the possibility of what you're giving me is far too large for a few words on a tiny screen. I wish I could do more. I wish I could say more. I've honestly never been so at a loss for words in my life. And to the people who know that personally have never witnessed that in my 27 years of life. I'm a talker;  I like to talk.

But I truly don't know what to say.

And maybe it's better not to say too much in this case. The simplest "thank you" may be the best. 

Thank you for giving me some more light at the end of my life. Whether it's one minute, one year, two years, ten, twenty or fifty, thank you to you, my donor, whoever and whereever you are.

I will cherish every bit of it and bask in the rays of light. 

Forever grateful & warm,