Another Membership

28 Jan

We all sign up for memberships in our lives, some willingly and some without thought or even wanting to belong in that group of  people. Some of them are actual memberships while others aren’t.

Take me for example. I’m first and foremost a member of a certain race and gender – caucasian and female. I fit into a certain demographic due to my age. I’m an actual member of my nearest sports club. At one point I was even a member of two different clubs, one for track and field and one for tennis but then I had to cut tennis. I’m a member of the blogging community, of Twitter and Tumblr, Facebook and Instagram.

Even though I never actually registered anywhere, I’m a member of the L club. Also, I’m a half-orphan, something I never thought I would be and never wanted to be but there I am. You can’t always help belonging to certain groups now, can you?

What caused this listing of memberships you might ask? Well, the other day I got mailed another membership card, the card with my name and donor number because I signed up with DMKS to be a bone marrow donor and it made me happy. Yes, I sometimes enjoy the little things. Maybe it seems strange to be happy about being a registered donor but it fills me with joy nonetheless.

I’ve had a organ donor card since 2008 but that is not registered anywhere. It’s just something I carry around with me in my wallet and it’s not like I would give a kidney away just because someone needs it. Maybe to someone from my family but it seems like a hard decision because I might need my second kidney one day. I’ve been terrified about kidney failure since I was a teen and even more so after visiting the dialysis ward in 11th grade.

Nevertheless though, I want my organs to be of help to someone after I die. I don’t need them anymore and what could be better than giving another person a second chance at life. Generosity like that doesn’t hurt once you’re dead! I knew that I wanted to be an organ donor from the time I was in primary school, yes, that early. I couldn’t speak english, or solve math problems with variables but I had set my mind. Of course, you cannot make such a decision at age 8 but it stuck with me.

There is a lot of controversy around organ donation in Germany, if the organs go to the right people and all that stuff. There have been cases in recent years – cases of corruption and it scares people away from becoming donors. Not sure how it is handled in other countries but here you never have to make that decision. You can but no one asks you until it is too late and a family member has to make it for you. Our health insurances want everyone to at least be confronted with this decision once in their life and I think that is the right thing to do. Unfortunately scandals have prevented them from actually doing so until now.

In october I got registered to be a bone marrow donor. I may never be called upon but the chance to actually help someone, give them their last chance, is something very powerful. Who am I to deny someone the gift of life when I can do so without too much trouble for myself? I suppose a lot of people never think about it until they are confronted with leukaemia on their own or need a transplant.

I really hope that someday I can help another human being like this, may it be while I’m still alive or after I’m dead. Well, I don’t know how or when I will leave this earth – if I’ll be healthy then but if it’s of any use, they can strip me bare. Take my kidneys, lungs, heart, liver and retinas I don’t need them to be cremated.

It’s hard for me to understand why this is such a difficult decision for so many people but then again, I don’t understand a lot of things. I just wish more people would take the time to ponder their hearts and become donors of whatever kind. Who knows?! You could actually give a little kid it’s last chance at surviving!

One of my best friends is both an organ and bone marrow donor, just like me and after learning that, I love her even more! Have you ever thought about this or are even a donor? If you haven’t, you really should think about it!!


4 Responses to “Another Membership”

  1. 2cagedbirds January 28, 2013 at 17:27 #

    When my dad died, my mom donated what she could of his organs. My granny (dad’s mom) threw a fit, because she firmly believed he couldn’t get in to heaven without all his organs.

    • Wilhelmina Upton January 28, 2013 at 19:50 #

      I’m glad your mom did what she thought was right even though she had to stand up against her mother in law.

  2. Viveka January 28, 2013 at 15:47 #

    This is so important … and I’m so surprised that not more people are signing up.
    I have been giving blood nearly my whole adult life – and I been an organ donor since 1972, but with my cancer I’m not able to give neither anymore … but I have no given my whole body to science research instead, because if they can learn something from my illness and how it has affected my body and organs, be welcome

    • Wilhelmina Upton January 28, 2013 at 19:52 #

      That is also a great thing to do, donate your body to science. It seems weird to have people rummage through your body after you’re gone but it’s necessary. Either for teaching medical students or for research.

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