Five months to the day after I received my new heart, I received yet another blessing. In the mail was a letter from my donor family. Before I even opened the envelope, I was overwhelmed with tears. Amidst their pain, they had reached out to me, and I knew that in a moment I would come to learn about my donor.
The first words I read included her name–a most precious name. It is still difficult for me to even say her name. Her name is so interwoven between my gift and their grief, my strength and their sorrow, a sorrow I will carry with me forever.
They wanted to tell me a little about their daughter. I learned of her very young age, her talents and gifts, and her love for family. They told me about her giving nature and her love for helping. I have read this beautiful letter so often and I will treasure their words forever.
My story now includes this beautiful young girl of 13, and her family who offered me her heart.
My gratitude today encompasses not just a vibrant heart, but includes my donor’s name, her life, and her family. This family gave me the most miraculous gift–the opportunity to live. I now anticipate many added years with my beloved family; cherished moments with friends; renewed energy to accomplish tasks small and large; and the hope to live out my life in thanksgiving.