The day I met my donor

I never thought I’d do it. It’s been seventeen years, after all. And even if I did do it, I never believed it would be this hard.

Mum and I had talked for years about going into Births, Deaths and Marriages to see if we could find her, but today on my own, I went into a quiet room – so quiet the air had a tenderness about it – and scrolled slowly through a reel of microfilm until I found her.

Today I found my donor.

I have to say it again because it doesn’t feel real – I found my donor. 

I had always known the rudimentary details about her, but never her name or date of birth; her exact age or the the colour of her hair.

And now I know because today I ‘met’ her just for a little while. I even got to see a photograph and wow, is she exquisite. A brunette, with shades of red. I knew my donor was a brunette. Don’t ask me how – I just knew. She was married and we share the same initials when she still had her maiden name. She was twenty-two and we were born in the same year. Her name is unusual; I never would have guessed it. She was married. At twenty-two. And at twenty-two, she died.

Her funeral notice reads ‘tragically taken’. Because she was. She was taken from her family in the most tragic of circumstances in her apogee; her absolute prime.

But then she gave. Gave life to me and from what I understand, several other people.

I knew yesterday I was going to the library. Last night was, in spite or because of, the most restful sleep I’ve had in months.

This post is short because I’m crying rivers and trying to process something that is profound and so much bigger than me. The only trouble is that I’ve opened a door I’m not ready to close, but this shall do for today.

All I know is that she lives through me, and I through the wonder of her. Every breath honours you, C. I just hope that I have been enough, done enough, am enough.

12 thoughts on “The day I met my donor

      1. There is no doubt. You are not one to take anything for granted. Wherever you go, she goes with you. Her loss was not wasted as many are. Part of her goes on. XO

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Oh Carly!!!!! What a gift she gave you but at such a tragic loss for herself and her family. Seriously bittersweet. Her death was not so you lived. You must remember that. She and her family donated so that your family didn’t have to go through the pain they went through and so that you could live on when she couldn’t. What a beautiful girl she was to be an organ donor. She lives on in you. If she knew you she’d feel so blessed. Sending you the hugest of hugs my darling. xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Carly, there are some real words of wisdom in the comments there. I don’t know how I’d feel if I was in your shoes. I am very grateful to the people who have helped me like my doctors but that’s very different to being an organ recipient and knowing that person died and a part of them lives on inside you. It was very noble and generous for her family to do that…so compassionate. I cling onto every little thing and I think I would donate a loved ones organs but there’s still a lot to get your head around, particularly if they had no warning. Makes me think about the good things people can do for each other! By the way, I was up at Byron Bay a few weeks ago and thought of you. Hope you are going well. I’m just catching up on a few of your posts now xx Rowena

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