Saturday, March 27, 2010

A different type of "why me?"

Tomorrow is the 6th anniversary of my second transplant. Last year, I searched www.unos.org for survival statistics and learned that 23% of people getting second transplants live to see 5 years post. That number both terrified and inspired me. I wanted to do battle with that statistic, as irrational as that is. It literally took my breath away that I was in such a minority.

I suppose data searching is becoming a tradition on my anniversaries as I did it again this morning. I learned that while 1586 people will make it 5 years post after a first transplant, only 28 people will survive 5 years after a repeat transplant.

Tears sting my eyes with the shocking nature of these numbers. I am so lucky.

And yet I can't help but think back on all the friends I have loved and lost. In my gratitude I also am struck with the sentiment "why me?" Why should I be one of the 28? Why not Susy, Gabe, or Paul? Is this survivor's guilt? I am no more worthy.

Thank you universe, for letting me live beyond where the statistics stop counting. Thank you for letting me see another day.

Thank you donor family for your gift in your hour of grief and my 11th hour.

May I do this gift justice. Overwhelming. Just, overwhelming.

Completely humbled,
Tiff

1 comment:

Jen! said...

Fabulous post and I can relate to it soooo well. At 39 with no lung transplants yet, I have been wondering a lot lately why did I get to live beyond the life expectancy? Why does this child or that teen or that young adult have to suffer so much?

And so despite all of my breathing treatments and hospitalizations and pain, I have lately been able to say I am GRATEFUL... for every breath.