Please let me introduce you to Cindy Mitchell, who is a beloved member of our Tuesday hooking group in Maine. Cindy is a wife, a mom, a professional person, and a rug hooker who is just now launching her own pattern design company, Paws & Claws Hooking. Cindy can handle a hammer as skillfully as a hook and regularly does carpentry work in her beautiful Maine home. She’s a great cook, and hosts the best summer parties anywhere. She ice fishes and snowmobiles, and is the best bargain hunter and antique/vintage picker I have ever known. Cindy is also a wonderful friend.
For the past 20 months or so, Cindy has needed exhausting kidney dialysis three times a week, for four hours a session, due to a very rare kidney disorder that came out of the blue to her. Cindy is not the only person in our Tuesday group to have grappled with kidney disease. In April of last year Irene Adams, suffering from a genetic kidney disorder, received a kidney transplant. Her donor was Ron Adams, her husband, and the man who makes our amazing Bear Pond Wood Works hooking frames. Irene was fortunate that her donor match was so astonishingly close at hand, but Cindy needs a transplant too and has not found a match yet.
Cindy has explained to me that there are at least several hundred thousand people in the United States suffering from kidney disease. Donors are needed, and living donors are actually preferable in many ways because they can be thoroughly screened before donating. Also crucial is the fact that life expectancy is better in cases of live donation.
Irene’s transplant was, and Cindy’s transplant when a donor is found will be, handled by the Maine Transplant Team at Maine Medical Center in Portland, Maine. For more information about the program, and most importantly, if you are moved to consider donating, go to their web page at: http://mmc.org/MaineTransplantProgram
Additional information can be found at the United Network for Organ Sharing at: http://unos.org/.
You do not have to be an exact match to one specific patient to help through donation. Through a swap program, a network of donors and patients can be established which ends up creating possible matches where none may have been known otherwise.
Below is a photo of Irene Adams with the rug she made for her Maine Transplant Team, which now hangs in their office in Portland. Irene is living proof that transplantation is the gift of life itself. I know that asking for help in finding a kidney for Cindy is a very big request, but I can’t think of a more important thing to go to bat for. One of the things I love about our craft is how much it draws us together like family. Please share this blog post with anyone and everyone who might be able to help, and I’ll definitely let you know when Cindy’s new kidney is found so you can celebrate along with us! With gratitude – Beth