Saturday, November 3, 2012

A Karmic Thanksgiving

The last few years as the holiday season approaches, I try to spread the love. What I mean is, I try to take a moment to appreciate what I have and then find a way to share that happiness. I am truly blessed to have wonderfully supportive family and friends as well as a career I enjoy and good health that will hopefully allow me to continue enjoying life for a long time. If you really want more details about what an awesome life I have, you can check out last year's Be Thankful Challenge blogposts. That month of reflection was definitely a way to help me appreciate what I had during the holidays. I also adopted an angel last year through the Salvation Army. I had so much fun shopping for a little girl knowing (hoping) that her Christmas would be special with presents under her tree.

This year, in the last month my family (and family of friends) has experienced a trying time with illness. It's very frustrating to try to make sense of young, beautiful (and sometimes annoying) people suddenly falling ill with leukemia. Medicine, sick children in particular, is something that I deal with everyday, but when you're not the doctor it's a very different perspective. There's no time to process this diagnosis or label that has been given before the fight must begin. It's confusing. Most of all, there's a lot of questions (usually starting with why) that don't have answers. Being the support group is difficult as well, trying to find the right words to say. One of the first conclusive thoughts I could come to though was that if a bone marrow transplant was needed, I would offer to be matched. It was a pretty easy decision as my life would be forever different without this person. However my medical knowledge told me that without being directly related, the odds that I would be match were low. 

For a while now, I have taken a more karmic than religious approach to life. I try to base my actions and decision on the philosophy - put good into the world and you'll get good back. So I've decided the most I can do is apply this philosophy to this trying time.  This year to share my happiness around the holidays, I've joined the bone marrow registry. I realized that everyone needing a life-saving bone marrow transplant is somebody's person. Maybe if I help somebody else's person then if/when the time comes, somebody will do the same for my person. Truthfully, I'm totally scared by the idea of donating bone marrow (I don't really know why - it just seems daunting), but sometimes hope has to outweigh fear. So I sent out for my matching kit yesterday.

(PS - Please know that my immediately family is well and that for now "my person" is focused on processing and fighting this diagnosis, and is not quite ready to share it yet.)