We hear it this time of year with the same volume of seasonal audio — water splashing in the backyard wading pools, then from public pools, trickling into rivers, lakes and the rugged coasts — one in western Canada, another in the Pacific Ocean, and then, thousands of kilometres east where the Atlantic Ocean flows. It’s a creed, if you will. It’s a proclamation that gives us permission to take our feet off the gas. To take a break. To relax. To not take things too seriously. Got a clue yet? It’s something we hear and it goes something like this: “There’s not much going on in the summer. Enjoy it. We’ll get back to work in the fall.”
While that summer salutation is so darn courteous — even encouraging — we must face reality … or, make that, the unfortunate reality. Medical challenges do not know any borders — or seasons. Young parents of button cute, loveable kids have so many hopes and dreams. But when the world’s newest junior citizens require an organ transplant, those hopes and dreams fall to despair and concern. The glorious phrase of “Another day at the beach” is the furthest thought from families who need help.
We all can help. And help is certainly needed. A quick Google search produces the number of Canadians waiting for that wonderful phone call telling them an organ transplant is now a reality. Such a noble notification engages new hope. A new life. But exuberant moments never would see the light of day if someone did not share the time to fill out a donor card — one of the most unselfish strokes of the pen we can do.
Summer lends itself to so many times and places where we can ponder those thoughts, we don’t have time during the busy time of the year. Maybe you will be sitting on a pier with your toes enjoying your favourite lake … maybe sitting in a chair overlooking the day’s sunset … maybe sitting in the middle of the lake during a fishing tour, and while you patiently let your fishing line out in the serenity of the placid water … or maybe dozing off on your towel while you’re sun tanning at your much-loved sandy beach.
Such comfortable summer situations afford us the time to contemplate what it must feel like, as a parent, to be told your new baby needs an organ transplant. Each tick of the clock becomes louder than the previous as time becomes unsettling. Now, think of how you can be the person who can reset the clock for a new chapter, just by signing your donor card. If you do, your 2023 version of “What I did on my summer vacation” is headed on an express journey towards the best-seller list.