I recently saw a list of the 10 most common New Year’s resolutions. Most of the items on the list were goals for improving health in some way or managing time better (such as spending more time with family and friends). These are great goals, but for someone struggling with various health concerns, they can seem almost unattainable. An example of this situation is a man named Bruce.
I met Bruce a few months ago. Just a few weeks before we met, he had received a kidney transplant after spending over four years on dialysis. If you are not familiar with dialysis, it is a medical procedure that is lifesaving for someone in kidney failure. However, it is also time-consuming and physically draining. Despite the challenges that dialysis presented, Bruce continued to take daily walks in an effort to maintain the best health possible. He also continued to work: not an easy task when at least 12 hours of every week is dedicated to dialysis treatments.
When Bruce was first diagnosed with kidney failure, the drive from his home to dialysis was at least 45 minutes each way. There were a few times he had to travel during a storm, making the trip longer and dangerous. In an effort to free more time in his day to spend with his family, Bruce and his wife found new jobs and moved to a town that has a dialysis center. His drive time to dialysis was reduced to about five minutes each way, but the dialysis treatment still consumed four hours, three days each week.
In March, Bruce was finally added to the transplant waiting list. As he waited, he diligently tried to maintain his health as best he could. After several months of waiting and four years of dialysis, Bruce finally received “the call.” With a new kidney, he will now be able to head into 2019 with more time, more energy and better overall health.
Bruce told me he feels he has hit the jackpot as he contemplates what 2019 will bring. He is very grateful to someone he will never have the opportunity to meet or thank in person. That person said yes to donation: a decision that may have saved Bruce’s life. Without that person’s selfless decision, Bruce would not have his new kidney. He is a hero in Bruce’s eyes.1 comment on this story
Currently in Utah, about 750 people are on the transplant waiting list; over 500 of those individuals need a kidney. We are starting a new year, with new goals. Losing weight, working out and spending time with family and friends are great goals, but why not make one of your goals to get the facts about organ, eye and tissue donation and sign up to save a life? Signing up to be a donor is easy. You can register when you receive or renew your driver's license or state ID card, or you can sign up online.