Hello, my name is James and I am one of the Donor Mentors with the ReMend Mentoring Program.
KIDNEY DONOR EXPERIENCE
My involvement with becoming a kidney donor started with me being a simple bystander. I had a sibling who was diagnosed with kidney failure due to complications of diabetes. As I watched my brother and his family try to deal with his diagnosis and the series of emotions they had all been going through, I asked myself how I could help. As his journey continued I could not help but to get involved. Instead of waiting for him to ask me the QUESTION all people in his position must ask but feel a great deal of apprehension, I offered to get tested to be a possible donor. After finding out that I was not a perfect match my education continued by being informed by the Donor Coordinator of the Kidney Exchange Program. Not only would I be helping my family, my gift as it has been referred to, was going to impact someone else and their family in a positive way. I became part of a chain of donors and recipients.
“What being a donor has made me realize is the lack of education and serious misconceptions that are attached to being an organ donor. What I have come to accept and even embrace is that through becoming an active participant and advocate in my brothers health, I have become my own best advocate in my own health. I have become aware of my own health and I am convinced that giving of myself has not shortened my life but has extended it by making me more aware of my own choices to live a healthier life.”
I live in San Diego and I am more than willing to travel anywhere in San Diego County to provide mentoring support for those that want/need a mentor.