Friday, 28 September 2012

Question Of Faith And Morality

As promised I took my scooter out to the shops yesterday where it behaved impeccably.

It was so much easier to move around the crowded aisles than with conventional scooters and I was able to reach all but the top two shelves. Not once did I feel unstable or unsafe so this is obviously the perfect environment for it, which is good because that's the main reason I bought it. If it remains dry this afternoon I'm planning another trip out around the village to see if I can do better now I've got used to it a bit more.

My new pump arrived this morning all perfectly programmed and appears to be working a treat. I don't have to return my old one until next week so I have plenty of time to test it and make sure I'm absolutely confident with it.

While out on my scooter I got stuck behind two old ladies in a queue for the checkout. They were talking about a funeral one of them had attended and how they had buried a 'shell' and not the whole person. I thought how comforting this was as when I buried my baby boy the vicar told me that he wasn't in the ground, it was just the shell he had lived in. I'm not particularly religious but I did find it comforting to think he was 'somewhere else' and thought how comforted this lady must have felt being told the same, so I was totally unprepared for what came next.

"They stripped everything out of him you know, the bloody vultures!"

It took me a moment but I realised she must be talking about transplants. My suspicions were confirmed later in the conversation and it started me thinking.

I've only every thought of transplantation from my point of view. I need a heart and lungs and there is only one way of getting them. However I've managed to look upon it as just getting another medication and have disassociated from the fact that in order for me to live someone must die. This conversation has made me think of things from the donors point of view, or at least that of the family and friends. And it has made me feel a bit uncomfortable.

I am a donor, though there is very little of me they can still use, and have always said I'd have no problems with agreeing to members of my family being donors but is that true? Would I, if the situation arose, be able to give consent? I wouldn't even allow a postmortem on William when he died so how could I possibly bare to allow organs to be taken and used by someone else? Of course no one knows how we will react in any given situation until it happens but I am now worried I may not be able to be as generous to others as they are willing to be for me.

There are religions who think the exchanging or organs, or even blood for that matter, is wrong and I've scoffed at these religions calling them short sighted and backward but what if they are right? Who commits the sin? The donor? The recipient? The surgeon? Then another part of me reasons that if God didn't mean us to have transplants he wouldn't have allowed us the knowledge to do them would he? And yet another part says it has nothing to do with religion and is just science.

I then wonder if by wishing to have new organs I am actually willing someone to die. This, of course, is nonsense. The person would have died anyway and if I or someone else don't have the organs offered they will just go to waste, which is the sin here, taking the organs or refusing them? It's not as though those in need of a transplant are walking around looking for a match, it's not as though we are 'farming' donors but by the very fact that we 'wish' are we actually influencing fate? Are we, by some power beyond us, causing the death to happen? Most will say that is ridiculous and impossible and they are probably right but no one can be 100% sure and even an iota of doubt still counts.

I know that I tend to over think things from time to time and that is probably what I am doing here but I think they are all valid questions, I just wish I knew the answers.

I have the day to myself as Peter is in work so of course I'm probably going to end up doing something I shouldn't. First up is a quick dust of the living room, then I'm going to try assembling my scooter by myself. Peter has done all the putting together and taking apart stuff since it arrived but I haven't as yet and it is important that I know whether I can. My freedom will be severely curtailed if I can't get the thing in or out of the car boot and put it together. I waited until Peter wasn't around because it would be too easy to wimp out and ask for help and I just know he would be unable to leave me too it, any hesitation he'd be there, helping. Don't get me wrong it is nice to have someone so willing to look out for me but there are things I just have to learn to do for myself and this is one of them. If I can get it assembled then the potential for misbehavior increases tenfold, I can't wait!

Now though it is time to have a cup of tea and read the assembly instructions. Wish me luck.