Maybe it’s a character in a novel, a historical figure, a celebrity, an entrepreneur. Sure, I have had plenty of role models, but my true hero is my dad. Growing up, he told me that I could do anything I put my mind to. During my moments of self-doubt, he helped me see that my qualities were not weaknesses, but strengths. He told me I was special, worthy, and taught me to always put my best foot forward. He always expressed his pride and acceptance of me — things a kid sometimes needs to hear, and I am so thankful for those words. But what's more important is that he didn’t just tell me, he showed me.
Fifteen years ago, I found myself separated from my now ex-husband, 5 months pregnant, and scared of what the future held. I found solitude in those great big arms that welcomed me back into his house. He gave me the confidence, that he will always be someone I can unhesitatingly take refuge in. Not only did he provide a loving home for my newborn son and I but partnered alongside of me to raise my son into the young man he has become.
As an adult I have had the pleasure of working alongside Dad and now co-own our family business. In our working relationship I watched in awe as he set his own personal goals and achieved them. Sometimes he’d hit a bump in the road, but he kept pushing forward. Great leaders have vision for what they are trying to accomplish and how they will get there. ... I witnessed that firsthand from him.
As you can see, I have had a unique relationship with my dad that stems way beyond a parent child relationship. When I reflect back, my mind swirls with memories of large and simple moments and these treasures that flash before my eyes fill my heart with utter gratitude. The dictionary defines a hero as a person of distinguished courage, admired for brave deeds or noble qualities. I define a hero as my dad, Frank Vines.
For the past 2 years, Daddy has been sidelined with kidney failure and complications with Peritoneal Dialysis. His kidney team has struggled to keep his Kt/V at a 2+. He is now on hemodialysis due to a recent bout with peritonitis. He needs a kidney from a living donor.
Kidney failure, dialysis, and infection have robbed him of so many things he used to enjoy doing. But he still gets up every morning and puts on his armor of God and fights the fight. Something he has taught his whole family to do.
Being a living donor is a gift like no other. If you are interested in learning more about becoming a live donor, or about starting the evaluation process, please look at his Transplant Center's website below. If you do not match my dad, you can help someone else get their life back through the paired kidney exchange. This is where each donor gives a kidney to the recipient in the other pair. This allows 2 transplant candidates to receive lifesaving organs and 2 donors to give organs even though the original recipient/donor pairs was incompatible. Another way to help is to share Dad's story on your Facebook page in order to spread his story far and wide!!
If you are considering being a living donor please use links below to contact Frank Vines's Transplant Center. Begin by completing the donor questionnaire
There are currently 120,000 people waiting for a lifesaving organ transplant in the U.S. Of these, 100,000 await kidney transplants.
The median wait time for a kidney transplant is 3-5 years and can vary depending on health, compatibility, and where you live.
In 2014, 17,107 kidney transplants took place in the U.S. Of these, 11,570 came from deceased donors and 5,537 came from living donors.
Every 14 minutes someone is added to the kidney transplant waitlist.
A kidney from a living donor lasts longer and begins functioning more quickly than a kidney from a deceased donor.
In 1995, kidney donation became minimally invasive with a procedure called laparoscopic nephrectomy, which only requires four small incisions. Hospital stay is typically only 3 days after this operation.
Not blood type compatible with your recipient to be a living donor? Kidney Paired Donation (the “kidney swap” program) enables incompatible candidates with a living donor to receive a kidney from a compatible donor.
Last year, over 700 living donor kidney transplants occurred using Kidney Paired Donation.
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