Choosing to become an organ donor is not an easy decision, and not something to be taken lightly. And what it really comes down to is personal preference. While I am young and hopefully won’t fully become an organ donor anytime soon, it is a decision I have thought about and struggled with for years.
The whole concept of organ donation was first introduced to me when my uncle died eight years ago. I was only 12 years old at the time, so I had a hard time grasping the concept. My uncle was one of the many people to make the selfless decision of being an organ donor. He was a fireman, so he spent his life helping people. After he died, I was told that he would get to continue helping people by donating his organs to people in need. While that was something that should have made me happy, and to an extent it did, I’m not going to lie, it made me angry. My uncle had to die, but someone else gets to live. As a young child, I had a very hard time with that because I saw that as very unfair. I still do to an extent, but I have learned over the years to accept it, and I have seen the greater good behind it.
I have also realized that when you choose to become an organ donor that does not mean that you have to donate everything. You can choose exactly what you want and don’t want to donate; it can be as much or as little as you want. I have chosen to donate my internal organs. Personally, I am not comfortable agreeing to donate my skin or any part of my eyes, so I narrowed my donation down to just my internal organs. Part of my decision to do that also has to do with the fact that I do not want to be cremated, so I just did not want the outside of my body to be touched.
You have to put yourself in the recipient’s shoes. If you or someone you love needed an organ to survive, wouldn’t you pray that someone was selfless enough to be an organ donor? I know I would. While it is extremely difficult to lose someone you love, knowing that a part of them will forever live on and they got to help someone (or maybe even a couple of people) makes it a little bit easier.
That is why I have chosen to become an organ donor. For a while I wanted to be one just because my uncle was, and I thought that would make him proud of me. I have come to realize that I needed to make the decision for myself. I had to do it because I wanted to, not because I thought my uncle (or anyone else) wanted me to. And you should do the same.
If it is something you are considering, make sure you are doing it for the right reasons and that you are doing it because you want to, not because someone else wants you to. While choosing to become an organ donor is a very selfless decision, everyone has different views on it; it is not for everyone, and that’s okay. No one can force you to choose to become an organ donor, only you can make that decision. But in the end, no matter what you do with your life, you have the ability to change someone’s life, even if it is just a little bit, so why waste it?