This letter is most likely to be very difficult for you to read but I hope that by reading it you find some small comfort in my words. It is almost impossible to formulate the words that will convey my absolute gratitude for your family's gift to me.
I am 35 years old and was diagnosed with diabetes at a young age. I developed a lot of complications through the years and in recent times life was becoming very hard to live with. I attempted to keep living life as best I could. I continued to work throughout my illness with the help of my family to give myself a focus. I am a very determined person and I try not to let things get the better of me. I believe that you have to live each day as it comes. It is only now that I see how bad my quality of life had become.
Today I feel magnificent. The transplant worked fantastically. Each day is so much better than the previous one. I have returned to work. I have the drive and energy to live life again. I feel as if I have woken from a fog and everything is clear now.
I think of all your family every day and I am so sorry for the utter tragedy that you all have suffered. Through my line of work, I have seen the cost and effect of such tragedy first hand and yet at such a moment, it was through the most selfless act that anyone can do, that I got my life back.
I feel that someone new is attached to me, looking after me. Someone that I will never know or meet but to whom I am eternally grateful and I think of every day.
I don' t know how to end this letter other than to say that I will think of you all at every moment, every Christmas, New Year and Anniversary. Maybe when you are finding times most difficult, you can read my letter and I hope it will comfort you and your family.
(A letter from a recipient to her donor's family)