Saturday, December 08, 2007

TODAY is the second anniversary of my kidney transplant. I thought about calling Mandy and Ted in San Diego but it is just too early to call the West coast. While I am happy that this day commemorates a day of renewal and purpose for me, I can't but help but think of Hillary and Avery Stern who lost their husband and father. There are always two sides to fortune. Since I have received this gift of life, I have made it my purpose to spread the word about the life saving benefits of organ donation and the meaning of the gift of life. I can only hope that I am not wasting the opportunity that I have been given. There are so many existential questions that come up with life or death matters and making meaning out of them. It think one of my greatest challenges has been to grapple with the question to which there is no answer- would Bob and Brett be content with the way I have I lived given their sacrifices to me? Am I honoring their lives? No one wants to feel like they have lived a wasted existence, especially the second and third times around.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

"Hmmmmmm....I wonder where we are going?" A blindfolded Scott asks.

All the girls joined in the fun! Mandy, Jill, Kate (now the new bride), Cynthia, and, (standing) Courtney, who was just about in labor at the party and gave birth to Chatham Grace just last week!
The Beauties of Camelot Park: Alison, J, and Jill - watch out for that Level 3 Sex Offender. Although I am 30 everyone tells me I still look 14! DANGEROUS!

I could have killed her! Mandy gives me the sob story about how she won't be making it out for this Thanksgiving holiday. I truly believed every word!
If anyone else has pictures of the party, please share them with me. I would greatly appreciate it!

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Happy Holidays! I can't believe that it is already the first of December! Thanksgiving was wonderful split between my dad's house for the first round of turkey and my mom's for the second. The family got some joyful news when my eldest brother Scott and his wife Audrey announced that they were expecting in June. It will be exciting to have a baby around. Since I have Jude, I put in an order for a niece. Though we all know that gender doesn't really matter as long as the baby is healthy.

The big scoop for the weekend was this "Family Surprise." While I thought that perhaps it was my 30th birthday celebration, I spoke with Mandy who told me in no uncertain terms that she was not able to come home for the holiday. I knew that my mother wouldn't arrange for a party without her knowledge. Secondly, when Scott came home, he began asking questions about the surprise and my mother pointed out that I was being selfish: "not everything is about YOU, Jill." This was true so I began focusing on other options. I have to say that Scott, Audrey, Kristen, and Todd were great accomplices to the rouse. Todd took us blindfolded on a seemingly wild goose chase and we arrived back at the Seton Hoghlands Clubhouse for a surprise party! I've never had a surprise party and I was quite impressed that my friends and family were able to keep the secret from me for so long! Pictures will follow later. So many of the important people in my life were there, including Mandy and Ted, and Courtney fully 9 months pregnant and her husband GW. Old friends like Cyn and Kate were there with even older friends like Alison. My dad's side of the family was there too, which really made it special. My mom also had a psychic there to do readings and everyone was intrigued by the responses they got. My 30th birthday was actually in June but because I was sick, we put off celebrating. 30 for me was a real milestone. No one ever would have imagined that I would live to 30, but through blessings, prayers, a positive attitude and a lust for living, I shattered those odds! I am so thankful for all the people that have touched my life and have gotten me through the many tough times.
more later...