This blog post is dedicated to my fellow actor and troupe member Emily who has found a way to inspire and cope through her art: playwriting and acting. It is very inspiring to see a kid around my age understand her feelings so well and find vessel to expel all of this pent up anger and frustrations into; this is a lesson we should all take from her, adults and children alike. So, I’d like to thank you Emily for teaching us that in times of struggle we should turn to our art for help.
You never think that the people around you can get hurt. We assume that nothing bad can happen around us, bad things only happen to others and we function as watchers. Emily was unfortunately not a watcher. Emily, a Junior in the theater program in my performing arts school, has been hospitalized. Emily has been struggling with stage 4 renal failure for some time, and has been waiting on the donor list for over a year. At this time, Emily’s condition is worsening. Imagine being a child with homework, friends, hopes, dreams, passions, loves, and being told you have to deal with a life-threatening illness. This sort of situation could easily break someone down, and make them lose sight of hope.
Emily, however, didn’t.
Instead, she began to write an autobiographical play entitled “It Gets Better” about the main character, Esperanza, and her struggle with life, her health, and herself. “This is basically how I hope my life would have turned out once I have my transplant.” Emily says in regard to her play. She began writing when she first got out of the hospital last year and she had to write a monologue for her Sophomore year acting class. She felt compelled to keep writing, to keep creating that this year she has now accomplished to write 16 drafts and has plans to keep going. This past weekend even, her play was entered in a District 8 Thespians competition for the Playwriting category and she received a Superior rating from the judges. When I interviewed her and asked what inspired her to write she replied, “At the time I was super emotional and I wanted to put my feelings down. On paper was the only way I knew how. This is something that is close to my heart and I felt like everyone needed to hear about.” Emily definitely is the perfect example for young artists of hope, as her character Esperanza perfectly illustrates that through her name and her actions.
Now, how does this story relate to service and helping others?
Well, right now Emily needs help. She is in renal failure and desperately needs your help to find a kidney. Currently she has to go to dialysis three times a week and has been in and out of the hospital due to other complications that can all be avoided once she gets her healthy kidney. I understand that organ donation is not for everyone, and that is okay. For those who cannot donate, what I ask of you is to spread her message far and wide. Spread this blog post, spread her website (linked down below), spread her call to action to anyone you can because we know out there that someone is willing and able to save her life.
If you, or someone you know would be interested in finding out whether you are a candidate here is some information about her vitals:
- Blood type O+
- Donor needs to be between the ages of 18-40 with healthy kidneys.
- Our insurance will pay for all testing and the actual transplant; meaning no medical out-of-pocket costs to donor.
- If the donor is not local to Miami there will be travel expenses, we will do all they can to help make the expenses the least possible.
Want to check if you’re a possible candidate? Check this website out to see if you apply! https://www.mtilivingdonor.org/
Social Media where you can reach Emily and her loving family
- her instagram @emily_aliana
Again, thank you Emily for you art. You are an exceptional example of what true bravery and determination is.