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Organ donation. Most people will either ignore this issue or not face it. There are about 19.5 million New Yorkers and yet only 11% of the state is signed up to donate. There are over 105,000 people on the waiting list. The supply just isn’t meeting the demand.

 

I started this website for two main reasons. I want to inform people, answer questions, and get the word out about organ donation. Secondly, I started this website for myself and for all the transplant recipients, donor families, and transplant patients waiting on the list for an organ. I feel that this website is a support route and an acknowledgement to all those people enduring this process.

 

 

Share your life. Share your decision.

Two simple steps in making a lifesaving difference.

 

Step One- Share your life.

Make the decision to become an organ and tissue donor.

 

Step Two- Share your Decision.

Sharing your decision to be an organ and tissue donor is as important as making the decision itself. At the time of your death, your family may be asked about donation. Sharing your decision with your family now will prevent confusion or uncertainty about your wishes later; Carrying out your wishes to save other lives can bring your family members great comfort in their time of grief.

Save A Life. Sign up Today.

http://www.donatelife.net/CommitToDonation/

Transplantation Works. I’m Living Proof.

 

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One response to “Home

  1. Laura Linton

    Dear Kristin,

    You are awesome! To think of all you went through and continue to deal with, and that you make time to do all you can to promote organ donor awareness – just amazing and so commendable!

    It is such a struggle to get people to sign organ donor cards. I talk to people about this all the time and cannot believe the things that they tell me: “The doctors are out to make money so they won’t go out of their way to save your life if they know you are an organ donor.” “All the organs go to rich white people.” “It’s a desecration of the body and I won’t get into heaven if my body is not whole.” Many years ago I decided to register to be an organ donor through NYS DMV. It just made so much sense to me. Why shouldn’t I help others after I am gone? My attitutde was: if you can use it – you can have it. I sure wasn’t going to need it anymore. Little did I know then just how much organ donation was going to touch my life personally.

    In 1982, when my sister Tina was 13 yrs. old, she was diagnosed with Type I Diabetes. In 2009, after years struggling with many of the unpleasant things that go along with this disease, my sister came to visit me one afternoon. Tina had just been to see her nephrologist who told her that her kidneys were failing and that it was time for her to go on the UNOS list for a kidney and a pancreas. Tina was crying when she told me this terrible news. I told her not to cry – that we would do this together – that I would be her kidney donor. Kristin, it was like someone had taken over my tounge and was doing the talking for me. Those words were coming out of my mouth but I couldn’t believe that I was saying them. I am the biggest chicken out there. When people found out what I was going to do they called me a hero, a saint, an angel. I hated being called those things because in all honesty I very scared but I kept this information to myself because I was ashamed to admit it. I had been healthy for 45 years. I never spent a night in a hospital. Having any negative feelings about donating a kidney made me feel like a real heel.

    Six months, and many many tests later I was walking into the OR at Columbia Presbyterian for a neprectomy. Everything went splendidly and my sister’s surgeon could not have been happier with Tina’s new kidney. Tina had a couple of minor hiccups in the beginning, but the kidney settled in very nicely. It has been 1 1/2 years since the surgery and but for a couple of very small scars I could almost forget that I ever had surgery. Physically it was not such a big deal. I was home from work for a month (I probably went back a couple of wks too early but I was bored) and I had lifting restrictions but overall I had annoying discomfort and no serious pain. This is not the case for every living donor of course but most people go through the process pretty easily. What I wasn’t expecting was how much happier I would feel every day thereafter. Tina and I went through something so big together and we came through it with flying colors. I was so grateful. There was a euporia that went along with all of this that was so strong I felt like I was glowing from the inside out. I told strangers everywhere what I had just been through and they were amazed and congratulated me. Some of them probably thought I was nuts but I didn’t care. I was banging the drum I guess – not to get praise, but so that people could see that living donation really worked and that I donor was walking around just like everybody else.

    This past May my sister got the call for a pancreas. This time the surgery was at NY Presbyterian on the Upper East Side. Sadly a 25 yr. old young woman had been out drinking the night before and fell down three flights of stairs in her apartment building and was pronounced brain dead. She was someone who had expressed to her family that one of her goals was to save a life. She saved/improved 5 lives with gifts of a new pancreas for my sister, a liver, two kidneys, and a heart for others. As you well know, a new pancreas takes a while to get settled, so Tina has lab appts. at NY Presbyterian 2x per wk. Fortunately I live 2 blocks from the hospital so she stays over my place the night before and then walks over. It’s been great spending so much time with her. Funny how things work out.

    Anyhow, just wanted to share our story with you and tell you how much our family admires you. Incidentally, we are originally Bklyn. girls too.

    Take good care,

    Laura Linton

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