Ruth Slavin: Gift of 8 Campaign

Personal | Guelph

Clicks to Register: 392

392% to my goal of 100

The photo shows me, Elizabeth Slavin, in January, 2013 on my 60th birthday. I was in the late stages of liver disease. One in three people who needs an organ transplant die waiting for the right cadaver, so my loved one had volunteered to give me part of her liver. It wasn't easy for me to accept this gift. I didn't have her for spare parts! But she insisted, and arrived from her home in Vancouver the day before Christmas, ready to go into surgery as soon as possible. On January 2, she learned she had to lose about 50 pounds before she would be allowed to undergo the surgery. The transplant doctors take no chances with the donor, and fat tissue doesn't heal as quickly as muscle. I wondered if I would die before we could do the transplant but my loved one exercised and dieted to a suitable weight and soon, her healthy young liver was transplanted into me. My skin went from yellow to pink almost overnight. I am regaining my health, thanks to my loved one's generous gift.

Please register as a donor so other healthy people don't have to risk their health for a loved one.

I would encourage everyone to register to donate their organs and tissues. Most people are not suitable donors, but the more people who sign up, the more suitable donors there will be. One registered person's death can be a lifesaving event for 8 people. A close relative who died a while ago was a registered organ and tissue donor, and her corneas and other tissue were transplanted into those who needed them. It is comforting to me to know that part of my loved one is still out there, enhancing some people's lives. For a healthy person to go under the knife to save a loved ones life, is a wonderful thing to do, but it is dangerous and disruptive to their life. It wouldn't be necessary if more people registered to be donors. It only takes a minute, so please do it now. It is one of the kindest things you can do in your life.

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