Wednesday, January 09, 2013

both sides

Seven years ago today we lost Laura. In her passing, she brought new life to six people awaiting organ transplant, including one pregnant woman who received her heart. So, really seven people.

We always knew Laura gave her heart to everything she did, pouring herself in with passion. Even in her death, she gave her heart to a young family.

Moments ago, Heléne Campbell posted these words on Facebook and Twitter:

Last year, my lung function was 19%, now it's 73%, and still going up. Crazy! Thank you ALL for the support, making 2012 an awesome year!

It is a comfort, seeing both sides of the equation. Laura could not live but others can, and do, because of her life. A six year old child has a mother in his or her life because of Laura's great, wonderful heart. Hélène Campbell is back at home with her beloved family, has returned to the camp where I was her counsellor, has dreams and ambitions that can now be realized because of the new lungs she received. My grandmother can see because of cornea donation.

Some years I forget a little that this is the anniversary of her death, that Boxing Day is the anniversary of her crash. Not this year. This year, for some reason, has been hard. She should be in university, or working, or travelling or engaged or dating someone amazing, or revelling in being unattached and carefree...any of the things she had imagined as a highschooler. I watch my other young friends, her contemporaries, age into adulthood and it hurts that she does not. She is timeless. She is forever. But she does not move forward in her living.

But Hélène's words this morning have been a tonic for my sorrow. She is so blessed to be here and alive and breathing, free of tanks, free of terror. She has her life ahead of her, as do Laura's recipients. 

It doesn't make her death acceptable. Lord knows it doesn't make it fair. But it makes it easier. 

It makes it a little easier.

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