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Why Should I Be An Organ Donor?

Image Wikipedia.Org.

Each day in the United States the National Kidney Foundation reports more than one million persons on the kidney transplant list. Sadly many people will never get that call informing them that there is a donor organ available for their use. An estimated twenty persons die each day due to a lack of donor organs.

Our Kidneys and Why We Need Them?

The Human kidneys, shaped like two kidney beans lie against the back muscles of in the upper abdomen. They are located on the left and right sides of the back (flank) muscles with the right kidney ‘sitting’ a little lower than the left due the the size and shape of the liver.

Combined our kidneys contain about 1.2 million renal corpuscles that filter up to 1500 liters (400 US gallons) of blood daily. What a powerhouse!

It purifies the blood and removes toxins from the body. They control the water balance, regulates our electrolytes like, sodium and potassium and maintains homeostasis thus keep us alive.

The renal system aids in the breakdown some medications such as NSAIDS (non-steroidal anti inflammatory drugs) making it available for use by our bodies. One such example is advil. The kidneys excretes all these waste products in the form of urine.

What happens when our kidneys malfunction?

If our kidneys are not functioning at their optimum or not working at all, then the toxins from the break down of the various chemical process involved in keeping us alive will not be removed and, will remain in the body causing illness and death in a relatively short period of time. When this happens the blood must be cleansed by artificial means.

Dialysis, using an external machine to ‘cleanse’ the blood is the next step. This process requires the creation of a ‘shunt’ which is created connecting an artery and a vein to be used for access to the circulatory system.

Image: masagepassport.wordpress.com

The process of dialysis greatly restricts a persons activities of daily living. It’s a time consuming process that generally requires you to go to a dialysis center three days a week, up to eight hours at a time.  The toxins are removed by spending an average six to eight hours at a time.

After dialysis patients often report they felt like they had the stuffing knocked out of them. The body has been depleted and unfortunately no man-made processes will ever work as well as God’s, so it takes time to return to your norm. Then by the time you begin to feel better its time to repeat the process again.

Am I Too Young to donate?

Many states allow people who are younger than 18 to register as organ donors.

You are legally able to decide from the age of 18, but some final input may be required from your parent or legal guardian.

So discuss your wish to become an organ donor with your family, and ask for their advise. Keep in mind that many children too, are in need of organ transplants.

Am I Too Old to Donate?

You are not too old to donate, just inform of your desire to do so and let the medical professionals make the decision whether or not you are able to do so.

Do not discount organ donation because you think you are too old as there is no defined cutoff age for donating organs. The decision to use your donation is based on strict medical criteria, not age.

The idea of donating your organs may be an unpleasant one to grapple with. I must admit that I was not enamored with the idea myself. As humans we do not want to contemplate our own demise and the connotations that this idea brings to mind are not pleasant ones. But the truth is that organ donation saves lives.

If they know I’m a donor, will they just let me die so they can have my organs?

Some people are under the misconception that their medical treatment may no longer be a a priority if they become donors”, the medical staff will make every effort to save your life as is within their power to do so.

When you are ill medical personnel are required by moral and legal code of ethics to make every available effort to save your life first. You will be seen by a doctor whose expertise most closely matches your particular condition and who can and will give you the best care possible.

If you are unsure of, or uncomfortable with your faith’s position on organ donation, ask a member of your clergy.

Even if your organs are not used for living recipients, they can be used in science to further medical understanding of many disease processes thereby making a greater impact.

Don’t deny yourself from the chance to help someone else. Let the doctors decide at the time of your death whether your organs and tissues are suitable for transplantation.

Being a Living Donor

If you decide to become a living donor, i.e. giving one of your kidneys to someone while you are still living you will have to undergo extensive psychological testing to ensure you are not being coerced into doing so.

This ensures that you are aware of the risks associated with your decision. Doctors will also test to see if your kidneys are in good shape and whether you can live a healthy life with just one kidney.

It’s critically important to consider becoming an organ donor if you belong to an ethnic minority. Minorities like African Americans, Asians, Pacific Islanders, Native Americans, and Hispanics are more likely than Caucasians to have certain chronic conditions that affect the kidneys, heart, lung, pancreas and liver. Some examples of such diseases are; alcoholism, high blood pressure and diabetes.

Certain blood types are more prevalent in ethnic minority populations. Because matching blood type is usually necessary for transplants, the need for minority organ donors is a ‘dire need’.

How to Register to Become a Donor

Becoming a donor is easy. Here are a few ways to indicate your wishes:

  • By registering on your State’s website.
  • Have it placed on your drivers’ license. 
  • Inform your close family members.

If you have a loved one who will make decisions in the event you cannot make them for yourself, discuss your expectations with them and ensure that they understand and will honor your wishes.

So now that you have some of the facts, can you see that being an organ donor can make a big difference? and not just to one person? Organ and tissue from one donor can save or at best improve as many as 75 lives. Also knowing that your loved one helped save or improve the lives of many others may bring you some comfort.

What are your thoughts, please comment below. I would really love to know.

Winter Has Come…

My neck of the woods today.

Good morning blogland. This is the current situation in my neck of the woods. Ugghhh!!

I love the cold weather, it’s usually one of my favorite seasons. Winter generally makes a gradual appearance.

Gives a body time to adjust.

Photo Of Siberian Husky
Pixels.com

But not this year, it showed up like a roaring lion and is showing out for us.

It is so c o l d here.

How is it in your space of the world today, what’s the weather like?

Yesterday

So yesterday I was off from work! Whooo!! I awoke early, of course, the young-uns needed mothering.

I had a doctor’s appointment, it had been set for 09:00 am but the rain was carrying on fiercely outside, so I knew that I had better leave with plenty of time to spare.

My daughter took the bus and my seven year old loves to walk to school. However with the combination of the rain and cold, this was not the best option for him so his dad drove him to school.

It took me about one hour and forty minutes meandering my way through side streets as the highways were a parking lot.

I arrived late for my appointment, of course.

Later on I was on Word Press and Gee was looking out the window and saw this red tree outside. He says he is learning to see nature through my eyes now as I see the beauty of God’s handiwork while he just sees “things in a space”. Lol.

So he said, “you have to take a picture of that for your blog.” I think at first he felt a little left out from the time I had been spending with “my blog”, but yesterday I can see he is beginning to appreciate the joy it brings me. Plus I share your stories with him.

The tree in the above picture in all its red fall majestic glory. I see the beauty that our God has placed here for us to temper the hard edges that life can sometimes bring.

The beautiful differences in everything he has created, the diverse shapes and colors. They shout ‘hallelujah’ as a testament to his love for us, and if we are discerning and silent we can hear it.

So I shuffled outside towards the end of the day to take my pic before it got too dark. What a sight I must have been, toes peeking out of my red and blue flip flops and a pepper-mint colored robe over my clothes.

Red leaves on trees along the river in autumn

There is beauty in every season. Even the cool stillness of an autumn day.

Winter Is Coming…

It had been raining the past two days. This morning when I left for work it felt a little nippy.

Dog, Animal, Cute, Eyes, Snow, Winter
Pic by Pixabay.com

So when I opened to door at 7pm tonite I was ill prepared for the barage of cold gusty wind that swirled viciously about me.

Instantly transporting me to the “north pole”. It is now dark and cold here, these temperatures in October are not the norm for my part of the world.

Usually the cold has to do a bit more roughhousing before the heat finally gives up and retreats. But this year summer has been evicted without preamble.

Myself and many others I assume, were not prepared for today’s weather.

I sprinted to my car and headed for the warmth of home.

One and all are settled under the covers. We shall emerge reluctantly in the morning for tomorrow is another day.

Somehow winter slipped by while I was distracted and caught me unawares.

Dog, Forest, Still, Stand, Animal, Snow
Pic by Pixabay.com

I feel a little like this poor doggy…hey what’s going on and where is everyone else?

Rainy Dayz Ponderings

Image result for friend scripture images

Today I am here with my ‘buddy’ and we will have a blessed day!

I remember when he started on his first day or rather night as we worked the night shift then. It took about five minutes and I dont even remember why but I looked over at him and said “oh I’m gonna love you!” He looked at me warily and asked “why?” I told him I just know I will.

Fast forward to some two years later, he still is someone I love, more so now that before. My work buddy that we share secrets and we both know they are safe when we do. We have each others’ backs. With him I can let my hair down, so to speak.

Today he is having some challenges with parents growing older and I am so glad that we are here together. We come together whenever we want/need to talk and retreat to our corners when we need alone time.

A good friend as stated in Proverbs chapter 17 verse 17: A friend loves at all times and a brother is born for a time of adversity.

Please remember my brother in your prayers.

Thank you. Amen.

Rites of Passage…1

A giraffe in a pothole!
portfoliocollection.com
This pic depicts my life as I am propelled toward the future but am looking back at my past. Stuck in between two phases, youth on the left and God forbid, old age on the other side.

Today I decided to branch off on a more delicate topic. Currently or maybe since the dawn of time, aging, especially that of women have not been a favorite, anticipatory or much-discussed topic.

But this has been on my mind and I have been cerebrating on this for some time.

I am constanly being prompted to write about menopause, and I thought of creating a separate blog dedicated to the joys, pains and ultimately the blessings of aging.

Let me preface this by saying, I am certainly grateful to be alive and wish to live to a ripe old age, matter of fact I have spoken over my life that I will have a long healthy life in Jesus name and bow out in a due season.

This series will be based on my “humanness” so bear with me as I try to approach this phase with some laughter as well as tears. I have decided to be very vulnerable in this series, so be a little gentle with me.

The other alternative to aging is not one we chomp-at-the-bit to reflect upon. As the connotations are not welcomed by the masses.

I Have Seen Younger Days

I would like to take this time to reflect on and be grateful for things past, but we must trudge onward no matter the tide.

Now that I have reached the middle of the road and have recently been placed on this path, I feel compelled to say a few things on the issue I wish I had been privy to.

I thank God for every moment of this journey thus far, and per His direction each intersection was pre-planned and a necessary requirement of the trip, lol.

The road to growing old is filled with what appears to be, at least from my vantage point, lots of bumps and even a few potholes along the way.

Image result for free images of potholes in the road
pic; cleanpng.com

Many, no most days I feel like the image here, not sure when or how this came to be? Why am I in this hole from which I am unable to emerge?

When I look in the mirror there is this person with whom I ‘m not familiar looking back at me.

The Changing Tides

Where is Pene’ I ask, who is this creature with a vague resemblace to her that I see here, surely this cannnot be her?

I often feel the urge to lay on the floor and have a tantrum as I am in unchartered waters and feel like I am barely threading to stay afloat. And to add insult to injury I cannot swim.

I remember when I was young my mother would be fanning herself, standing in front of the refrigerator and doing all these things that I thought were so odd.

I had asked her several times, what on earth is the matter, why are you doing these things, but she never really gave me an answer.

Image result for free images of older women hot from menopause
Pic: mirror.co.uk

Back in Guyana, we have an old adage that says; ‘piglet asked, “mommy why is your mouth so long? The mother just smiled and said, oh son your time is coming’.

So here we are, a few years ago I was sitting at work one day and I felt this ‘furnace’ rise from within. I dismissed it as I had alwas been a person who is always hot and usually dripping sweat during the summer months.

The same scenario repeated itself a few times beore the lightbulb went off! Oh dear God! could this be? No, surely not! I’m still too young my mind wailed!

Image of crying emojis
Image result for free images of older women hot from menopause
pic: mesupport.co.uk

This picture is exactly what that fire feels like, you are burning up from the inside out.

Acceptance…Or Something Like It

And so it came to be that I had begun the next phase of my journey, albeit without any input from me at all (sigh).

I was being taken along for the ride and could not get off the train as it barrelled toward the unwanted destination.

Now Your Input Please

Please engage, those who are about to enter, have entered, at the end of and survived with sanity. Let us not remain silent so that other women do not enter into this phase of life with a little more practical information.

Lessons Of A Bonus Mom

I look at this pic every day as a remembrance.

I have the distinct honor of being the first living grandchild on both sides of my immediate family. I am also the first niece and eldest cousin. My formative years were spent in a home with my grandma.

My mom tells me that when I was just a baby my grandmother was very ill and since my mom was often occupied helping her younger brothers and sisters, I was left in the care of my grandmother fairly often.

Since my grandma was of ill-health at the time, being in ‘her care’ meant that I laid on the bed alongside her. Thus began the relationship with the woman I regarded as a ‘bonus mom’. I was pretty close to grandma all her life.

Grandmother called “mommy” was the matriarch of our world. She ruled with an iron fist yet she was kind and gentle, discipline however was non-negotiable.

There were always extended family and friends at our home and she would ensure each person was welcomed.

Mommy taught me that about the love of God, many of the scriptures I know today I first heard her quoting as a child. I learned that being respectful was highly valued and being kind and grateful were close seconds and thirds.

She taught me to persevere; I remember in school when I was tired and did not want to pursue studying she would often quote Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s “The heights by great men reached and kept were not attained by sudden flight, but they, while their companions slept, were toiling upward in the night”.

I smile now as I write this, that woman, my grandmother spoke in parables more than plain words and somehow I seemed to have been paying rapt attention. Whenever I have wanted to quit as a child and then a young woman I would just hear her voice in my head encouraging me.

And so I would stay up late and study on.

Back then I did not always appreciate the lessons, but in retrospect, I am so grateful.

Now in middle years the words of my grandmother still ring true. I have been an attentive student all my life and even though I have not lived with her since I was fourteen years old I have been schooled well at her feet. She was the guiding force in my life, my tutor and a pivotal catalyst for who I am today.

Even though I left the country of my birth many decades ago, I would frequently call grandma on the phone and each of my kids would be on a plane for grandma to meet and bless as soon as they could travel there.

My grandma once told me, “I pray for you every day”. What a wonderful gift to give, to pray God’s protection and blessings for someone everyday! But that’s what grammas do!

I have a picture of grandma’s ‘celebration of life’ program in my bathroom. It is one the first faces I look at everyday and it brings me joy because God gave her to us for a time.

Grandma left this life on June 22, 2009 and though a piece of me has left with her I will forever fondly remember the many lessons she thought.

The Little Things We Find Pleasure in…(2)

The last of my summer fruits

So this is a follow up to one of my earlier posts about our pear tree and its fruits. Today my mother and I went over to the house (we no longer occupy the premises, but still own it) and picked the last of its fruits.

We, well mostly me, had been eating the pears before they came into their fullness, see pic below of a less-matured pear and notice the difference in the color. The younger ones were just beginning to show signs of being kissed by the sun but were good none the less.

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These pears are the best, with the texture of apples and of course the graininess of pears and just enough sugar to make it delicious, at least to me. Did I neglect to mention they were also tree-ripened. The flavors are so much more enhanced when they ripen in the sun.

Due to its firm texture, it would be perfect in a salad. I should give that a try.

I love all pears and this pear in particular is a favorite of mine even though I cannot recall the name. The tree information has long since been bleached by the Texas sun.

The last pears of the season and of course I wanted to take a picture of them for I will have to wait one whole year for their return.

Gods providence for us is a constant we can count on and I feel so blessed to be able to grow and eat my fresh fruits.

Imagine…

Image result for meeting old friends images
pic: gettyimages.com

To my friends in blogworld out there. As I sit here, on WordPress of course…where else would I be? The best thought fluttered into my mind.

Imagine that we have a reunion in Heaven some day with all our brothers and sisters out there in blog land. We interact with each other daily knowing we most likely will never meet in the flesh.

But imagine we get to greet each other in heaven…how wonderful would that be?

“Hello I am “blog name here”, and we hear words like, “I was so inspired by what you wrote on these specific days that it kept me going when I was ready to give up”

Lovely thought.

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