Tuesday, April 8, 2014

New experiences

Some people are thrill seekers. They are into extreme sports so they can get that "adrenaline rush". Yet, there is a certain sense that in taking risks you feel truly alive. I  love to experience new things because it allows me to see the world from a different perspective. Ah, yes, the "per" words perspective and perception. These vernacularian twins represent vision divided by reality. What wise soul would not want to increase their perspective, thus allowing them to see the world from different angles, viewpoints, the other side to every story. Since perception is reality, at least at the individual level, the inherent value of fine-tuning our perception through the summation of its angles is immense. Perspective augments perception.
Some new experiences require us to step outside of our comfort zone: Trying Thai food for the first time, riding a mule down the Grand Canyon, speaking at a press conference with the Speaker of the California State Assembly. Just jump in, the waters fine.
Today Barbie and I spent the day at the California State Capitol in Sacramento. April is Donate Life Month and Donate Life California, of which I am a volunteer ambassador, was tasked to spend two days working as advocates (the non-profit word for lobbyists,) to encourage state senators and assembly members to vote for AB2399 which would facilitate simpler e-registration for organ donation. Barbie and I had no idea that this meant meeting with legislators and their staffers. In one office we met Sen. Berryhill who had a heart transplant 13 years ago. We shared an emotional moment as we remembered the gift and sacrifice of our donors.
Finally, at the press conference, it was my turn to speak after the Speaker, Sen Perez (the bill's author). I was told that I had 2 1/2 minutes (oddly reminiscent of junior Sunday School 50 years ago.) Various disparate ideas coalesced into one of the most coherent messages that I have ever given. Even my laryngitis was momentarily transformed into a steady low bass. In essence I shared that the depth of gratitude that we as organ recipients share is beyond preparation. It wells up from the innermost core of our souls and remains a daily reminder of our indebtedness to the kindness of compassionate strangers.
As I finished, the leaders at Donate Life California felt that I had properly shared their vision and their message.
I have never experienced, first hand, the inner working of politics. I have new perspective which can now, hopefully, fine tune my perception.

Are you an organ donor?



Darlene said...

Because of your experience and the experience of a dear friend, I am an organ donor. The life changing gift of your donor is a blessing to us all. I'm so happy you're here!

leslie anderson said...

When we were little i knew you were destine for greatness. This is one on many great moments you have had in your life. You have lived more in 54 year than most people do in 80. Well done

Aunt Renie said...

Your 2 1/2 minutes were such a perfect message (a tear-jerker, for me). In Colorado, Organ Donor is a check-off when you renew your Driver's License. Makes it so easy!

Unknown said...

I am amazed at all that you do. I hope that you have had a good summer. I decided to check your blog and see how you are doing; and notice that you haven't posted since April. I know that treatment can be tough from my experience with dad. I know that life can be busy with your family and all that you do professionally and to seize the day and enjoy it. I send up a prayer for you and your family; that life finds you well. If you're in a tough moment, I pray that it will pass and you will enjoy a good day soon. I sincerely hope you are having a good summer and want you to know that you are in my thoughts and prayers. I found your blog long ago when I was researching Valcede subcutaneous injections; I was excited to share your story with dad back then. Today, I love to hear what you have to say. Thanks for all that you share: your journey, what you learn about research, zest for french fries and travel, your successes, and the hard days too. Forgive my wordiness; I just wanted to share that someone in Texas still cheers for you and finds comfort in your story.