Reflections on the Journey: 21 Years

BY: Wills Porter

The following was originally written on January 1, 2021. With my 21st transplant anniversary just hours away, I sat down and decided to reflect on the incredible experience of my personal transplant journey. This journey is not for the weak of heart. In many ways, this journey makes you a warrior. This journey has been challenging in many ways. I have lost four transplant brothers well before their time. Every time this happened, I was reminded of the responsibility I carry. That is, to honor my donor and live my life in a way that my friends would want to live. With that, I give you 21 years: A Reflection.

You won’t walk

You won’t talk

You may not even see

So.. you tell me, who am I going to be?

21 years post and here I am.

Don’t say I am a victim because I am not a fan.

I prefer to say I can.

I can walk.

I can talk.

I can see.

So, this is how it is supposed to be.

Today marks 21 years

But with a new year comes new tear.

Others have passed, so why am I here?

Transplants are a fascinating thing.

Rarely do the good times come before the sting.

The sting of pain.. the sting of loss.

I guess everything  in this life comes with a cost.

Today marks 21 years

Today, I live with no fears.

Today, I celebrate the life I have while also fully understanding the cost.

For I know my life was gained because another was lost.


Published by Wills Porter

Having been a transplant recipient of over 20 years, Wills is a living example of the life-transforming power of organ donation and transplant. While life after transplant has not always been easy, Wills believes that the challenges he has faced since his transplant have made him stronger and helped him take joy in his own transplant journey. As a KT author, podcast host and the director of research and development for Kidney Trails, Wills is focused on advancing the conversation around organ donation through innovative and extra organary ways.

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