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Transplant Rollercoaster

When you have Stage Five Kidney Failure, the ideal treatment is a kidney transplant. You can get a kidney from someone you know or even someone you don’t (this is called altruistic donation). You can also get one from an organ donor who has recently passed away (transplant list). A kidney from a living donor is the best option if possible. As I mentioned before, there’s a lot of testing that goes into finding the perfect match. On top of that how do you ask someone for their organ??? You literally can’t repay them. There’s no even trade for a life saving body part. On top of all that, it’s just awkward. “Hey are you using your second kidney? Can I have it? You’ll just have to go through series of tests then let a surgeon take it out and put it in me. Do you have a few days (weeks/months)?” No big deal, right? Well believe it or not, I haven’t had to ask anyone. I’ve had friends volunteer to go through all of this for me! #Blessed

In May of 2017, my friend called and said “I found you a kidney donor!” I waited, confused. “It’s ME!!! I’m a match!” She screamed. I was in shock! Whoa, is this happening? Over the next few months, my friend went through several more tests to make sure she was fit to donate her kidney. They even had to test her urine output for 24 hours. They check everything. She kept me in the loop throughout the process. After each test, she would forward me an email saying she “passed.” We were on our way. The last thing they needed to do was to send her to Tampa to do final blood work, an exam, and meetings with a psychiatrist and a social worker. The last two are to make sure you are mentally fit and have enough support to undergo this sort of procedure. After this, we would be closer to scheduling our surgery. We were both in a great mood when she got to Tampa in October of 2017. We were planning where we would eat after all the tests, and even discussed getting matching kidney tattoos after the surgery. I went to my car to listen to music while she met with the doctors. After a while, she called my cell. She and the nurse need to see me.

Due to an issue in her blood work, they weren’t able to continue with any of the testing. Everything was being put on hold. We’ve all heard the cliché “emotional rollercoaster,” but there’s no better way to describe how we felt. We went from being full of excitement to being completely thrown for a loop. So many concerns. Was my friend going to be ok? Will we get a chance to try again? Now what?

Once again my friend and I had to rely on our faith. There was a reason for this setback, and, as usual, there was a bright side. God had given my friend an opportunity to realize some things about her own health. Meanwhile I was leaving out the same way I came: still doing well and able to handle dialysis. So we focused on the positives, talked to our parents, and the next day we went to Disney World…. :)

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