Thursday, June 9, 2011

A Love Gift

She's going to do what?  Isaiah looked at me in disbelief.  Her fiance as advanced kidney disease and needs a transplant.  She is going to be a live donor for him.  I told the story once more. Bwoy! She brave sah! (Isn't she brave?)  Isaiah shook his head in further disbelief.

Nicky has been a close friend since 9th grade in high school.  This conversation took place the night she told me about her plans to give her left kidney to Junior, her husband-to-be.  I told her Isaiah's kudos to her bravery and she was very matter-of-fact.  Junior will die without a kidney and I can live with one.  It's a no brainer.

So today, my friend and her (now) husband went into to surgery.  She lost a kidney and he gained one.  By all reports, she is doing well and there is a large crowd of people all over the world pulling for Junior, for them both, as they navigate the next several days to months.

The story prompted me to think again about love.  Would I be a live donor?  I shuddered at the thought.  Honestly, I hope Isaiah would donate a kidney to me, but I understand his hesitation... I felt the same.  Yet, when I thought about the kids, something shifted for me.  I realized I would give one of them a kidney in a heart beat.  I know I love my children and am constantly challenged by the presence of this love, to love others.  I'm shown to be a liar when I say 'I just can't...' because that can't changes to can for them in so many ways.  Does that mean I love them more than anyone else?  No, I don't think so, but I think they have my deepest love without conditions.  For many other people, my love can fluctuate, depending on what they do.  In many ways it's a contract.

As I root for Nicky and Junior, I think about my own conditional love and challenge myself to generosity in love.  Who would you give a kidney to?

1 comment:

  1. Faith,

    We're rooting with you for Nicky and Junior.

    As I thought about your question, myriad questions came to mind. If I gave a kidney to one, then I would no longer be able to give a kidney to another. What if two of my children needed my kidney?

    On the flip side of that, the gift of a kidney is valuable, why would I passively wait for someone who needs one to cross my path? Why not be more active in finding someone who needs it?

    Then it occurred to me that sometimes giving someone a kidney might be easier than say, having them move in with you. Giving a kidney is fairly extreme, but it's a one time affair. Having that same person share your abode of years on end may be completely different. How are the conditions of love made manifest in the simple, daily things? Would I rather give you my kidney than spend every day together for the rest of our lives? I'd have to say, for some people, my answer would be 'yes'.

    Or, what would I expect in exchange for my kidney? Iris, I'll give you this kidney if you promise to no longer cover all available horizontal surfaces with your stuff. Seems a fair trade.

    Fascinating.

    Thank you, Faith!

    Teflon

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