I checked in with my friend Kate who lives near me and recently lost a son, Taylor, to suicide. This year’s mother’s day will be her first since her son’s death. Many of us get a Mother’s Day card or letter. But the Mother’s Day cards and letters she got were exceptional.
“Yesterday, I checked the mail and had a letter from Gift of Hope. (Organ donation) Inside was another sealed envelope with a letter from the man that received Taylor’s lungs, as well as a handwritten note from all four of his adopted children and one from his wife. Such a wonderful Mother’s Day surprise. I have cried and cried.”
The beautiful letters Kate received are below. While letters like this don’t erase her pain, they do serve as a salve to the wound. Giving back does help promote healing and Kate gave the ultimate gift, her son’s organs.
We don’t all have the option for donating our loved one’s organs (I didn’t), but for those who have been able to, it is a precious gift. The heart of our loved one can beat in other chests, their lungs draw in air for other bodies, their eyes provide clarity of sight for another. To those of us who’ve lost someone we love, this is very exciting and where hope exists.
At the time when an organ donation decision is made, no one can really see how many ways, how profound, and how often such a precious gesture will impact our lives. We are too numb to think that far ahead. I think most in this position just know it will feel very special to have some part of their loved one alive in another human.
I recall being completely unprepared for my first mother’s day in 2016 after my son, Charles’s, suicide. I had planned for the birthday and first death anniversary but forgot about Mother’s Day. I spent the day as a catatonic mess, shocked that the day happened without my permission. So I gathered up all the posts of the past and listed them below. Enjoy it. Stay in bed. Binge watch rom coms. You feel and do whatever you want.
And thank you Kate for sharing this heartfelt story.