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The ramblings and observations of a kidney transplant recipient, although not necessarily for that reason.

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Prime Rib Is Never Enough
Saturday, April 29, 2006
After 36 years on this earth I have become the perfect gift giver. I always know the perfectly appropriate gift to get someone based on the level of our friendship/relationship and the event at hand. For the rest of my life (after transplant) I will be faced with the dilemna of not ever knowing exactly what to get Matt, my lifelong friend and kidney donor. I'll never be able to find him an appropriate present for any occasion, but more specifically, for a thank you present. I'll forever be trapped in the world between "hollow gesture" and "absurdly too much," and often a little of each.

Have you ever considered the person that would give you a kidney if you needed one? What would be an appropriate thank you for that person? What if that person turned out to be someone different than you thought it would be?

I always thought it would be a family member that gave me a kidney. My uncle.....someone that I share unconditional love with. A person that would know without a doubt that I would give them a kidney if the roles were switched. For various reasons, it ended up not being my family, but my friend that would be giving me the kidney. A lifelong friend?... yes. A very good friend?.... yes. My best friend? While Matt is someone I greatly respect, admire, and appreciate, I believe he would agree with me that our friendship is not one of those that is one of unconditonal love. No one would blame Matt for thinking he might be giving a kidney to someone that might not return the favor. But then, I've never really had the real ability to consider it. I've known my whole adult life, I could never be a kidney donor.

Tonight I'm having a "Thank You Dinner" for Matt. Twenty or so of our mutual friends are going to a nice prime rib restaurant to thank Matt for what he's doing for me. That's not enough, right? Will everyone at the dinner be able to see its as hollow a gesture as I think it is?

What am I supposed to for Matt to repay him for what he's doing for me? Am I supposed to find one grand gesture to make and then forget about it? Am I supposed to realize that no one thing will compare, so I should make smaller gestures, over and over for the rest of my life, and hope that the collectively they add up to be enough when our lives are over? Should I start a cult in Matt's name, relinquish all my worldly possessions, and recuit people to follow Matt to the end of the Earth? I think that would be awkward for both of us.

My roommate says the best thing I can do honor Matt is to just be healthy. Be the person that deserves his kidney, and don't be someone who will let it go to waste by contributing to my poor health in other ways (like smoking, drinking, and driving intentionally on the wrong side of the road). I know he's right, but to do that is to make no ACTIVE gesture whatsoever. It's like doing nothing.

Prime rib's not enough, is it?
posted by othur-me @ 12:25 PM  
  • At 12:55 PM, Blogger Hamish and Leesha said…

    How about something in the shape of a kidney??
    That is a hard one. Good luck thinking of something.

    Good Luck with the transplant, I hope everything goes well for you.

  • At 12:47 AM, Blogger othur-me said…


    The only things I know that are kidney shaped are pools and kidneys. I can't give him his kidney back, so I guess I have to get him a pool.

    Thanks for the good wishes!

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