I have had a recent obsession with watching on YouTube emotional meet-ups between bone marrow and stem cell donors and the grateful recipients who are previously very sick children and adults who have been cured from blood cancers such as leukaemia and lymphoma.
Donors who gave a swab of saliva from their mouth, are called up often years later out of the blue, to be told they have the potential to save a life, often for people who live on the other side of the world.
The impact that this self-less giving has on the recipients and on their families is overwhelming and although life giving for the patient, it is also life enriching for the donor, who become connected by an incredible bond.
Under the rules of the process, they are not given information which would identify each other until at least one year after the procedure, and only then if both parties give their consent.
I think I am moved by the way in which the donor and recipient hold each other in a warm embrace which does not seem to end when they see each other for the first time.
I like the feeling I have when I see two people hold each other and when both are mutually committed to not being in a hurry to let go.
I give countless cursory hugs to family and friends, but it is a quick process which conveys to the person that they are cared for, and likewise I feel that too.
But to be held close, to be squeezed tight, to feel the weight of the other person so that their gratitude takes on a physical dimension to match their emotional weight is absolutely awesome to behold.
In those moments, being held by someone who shares your joy, or holds your pain, is to experience a feeling of rare gratitude that the deep well of suffering and endurance is measured by the body in terms of hope and love.
If you can, please sign up and “Be The Match”