This weekend millions of Canadians celebrate Thanksgiving by gathering with family and friends for a day of warmth, thanks and sharing around the traditional dinner.
Last year I came across this pumpkin patch where families with children were having a great time picking out the the best one to take home for a pumpkin pie or Halloween. This reminded me that it was Thanksgiving and that I had much to be thankful for and I posted the following message that I wish to repeat this year. (adjusted for 2006).
"As a lung transplant survivor of four and a half years I am profoundly thankful for my "second chance" at life and try to say a silent prayer of thanks daily to all those who made it happen for me. But on this Canadian Thanksgiving Day, 2006 I am publicly posting my thanks here to share with all.
Thanks to the front line professionals at the hospitals, such as the Organ and Tissue Donation Coordinators, nurses and physicians who have the sometimes heart-wrenching job of speaking to families of potential donors about donating their loved one's organs.
Thanks to my donor and donor family for making the courageous decision to give me the "Gift of Life" by donating their loved one's lung to me. I have never met you and know nothing about you, but if I could talk to you I would tell you how grateful and thankful I am. I would also tell you that your loved one is part of me now and that their spirit has blended with mine. And we are both doing very well.
A huge thanks also to the physicians that made it all possible: Dr. Rob Williams, Dr. Gerry Cox, Dr. Lianne Singer and my surgeon Dr. Shaf Keshavjee and his lung transplant team at Toronto General Hospital. The staff at Toronto General, from the nurses to the technologists and technicians were wonderful and I'll always be thankful.
I also want to thank my family and friends that prayed for me and gave me the loving support that meant so much and continues to mean so much to me."
Happy Thanksgiving to all! Merv.