Guys, I just want to put it all out there. For over a year, I’ve struggled to find the right words to make sense of the sudden passing of my father on April 26th, 2014.
He was chopping wood on his fathers farm, like he did most weekends. I was told that one minute he was smiling and then next he collapsed to the ground. The doctors called his heart attack “The Widow Maker.” His heart stopped instantly, out of no where, at the age of 44.
I couldn’t help but to think about him while reading “The Phenomenology of Death, Embodiment, and Organ Transplantation” by Gillan Haddow. I think on some level, I was hoping to find answers in the reading. Rather, every time I saw the word heart on the page, all I could focus on was the feeling of my own heart beating in my chest. These days, I’m too aware of it. I thought about the survivors of heart transplants and how incredible modern medicine can be. And then I wished that his heart could have been saved or replaced with a new one. I thought about how that replacement heart would have brought so much joy and relief to everyone in my fathers life, especially me. It is, after all, the gift of life.
Unfortunately, we cannot change the past and I remind myself that daily. All that I can do is strive to be a better person because he wouldn’t want me to live in sadness. That’s why I made the choice to donate my organs. If through death I can give someone a second chance at life, why not make that choice?