Thursday, January 28, 2010

I have Guilt.

I saw this picture on another blog, and I thought it was cute and wanted to pass it on to my former co-workers who would appreciate the humor.

One of the nurses e-mailed me back to say hi and to tell me about one of the other nurses (NJ) - it wasn't good news. NJ is one of those people who makes a difference in the world. I can honestly say that she has touched many lives.

I worked with NJ for about 10 years, I guess. The year I left for my current job, 2007, NJ got sick. I thought about it and felt like if things could wait until I got settled in my new job and lost a few pounds that I would have no problems giving NJ a kidney; at the very least being tested to see if we'd be a match.

Fast forward almost three years and NJ is not doing well at all. The e-mail said that she'd had some serious problems and almost died. I've always been very pro-organ donation, even as a teenager; I filled out my donor registration card on my 18th birthday. I'm feeling guilty for not running over to offer my kidney. I feel like I've got an extra one and she really needs it. BUT...there's always a but, isn't there? Things aren't going well with my current job, and even if things were better, I don't have anywhere near the time off I'd need for recovery. I work because I have to, not because I want to - unpaid time off is no bueno. So of course I feel selfish because I feel like it comes down to a money issue. And money's not supposed to matter in the grand scheme of life, right?

I know there are other risks and problems associated with donation, and if something happened to me my husband would be alone and my kids wouldn't have a mom. And the rational part of my brain tells me these are all legitimate reasons not to feel guilty, but I still feel like a selfish bitch.

Ha! The ad on the side of my "blog published successfully" message was for liver transplants at Ochsner Hospital! Weird, huh?


Cecile said...

OH Patti!! (((hugs to you)))
Okay you are being a selfish bitch.. No, I just had to say that to make you think I was agreeing with you. I am not. Your heart is in the right place my dear friend, but unfortunately the world does not see things through our eyes. It would be nice if our job understood that we wanted to help a friend out - a chance of a lifetime - an not be penalize for trying to do so... But it does not work that way. (((Hugs to you and your friend J)))

Hilda said...

Hey the fact that you feel like a 'selfish bitch' only means that you're not. You are very right to think about what could happen and to know that even though it'd be something unimagibly good to do, you can't put yourself at risk, especially because you have children who will not appreciate the fact that you tried to save your friend if you're not here to tell them. People usually say 'follow your heart' but I'm going to say follow your instincts. Do what is right even if it's not the righteous thing to do ;) (((hugs)))
I'm sounding like the selfish bitch right now, but this is what I would tell my mother if she were to tell me she was donating one of her kidneys.

Major Dad said...

You all ready know how I feel. I love you and support any decision that you make. Over the course of 24 years, I always have.

Hannah said...

Well, Major Dad can be supportive but I'm gonna be more selfish and say I would miss my sister and my BFF terribly.

Patti said...

Thanks Cecile and Hilda! You're both very sweet (and very wise).

J and Hannah: Thanks for listening in RL. <3 you!!