I hesitated to tell you about my transplant journey, but today was a special day and I want to share it with you. Last October, my step son went into renal failure. He is 24, going into 3rd year law school and has Alport’s Syndrome. It is a genetically inherited disease that results in kidney failure.
I have only been married to my hubby for five years but was well aware of the situation when I began dating him. I remember many a conversation when I would tell him that I would be there for him whenever the kidney failure advanced to the stage of dialysis. At the time, I thought support would be holding his hand and rubbing his back. When my stepson actually went into renal failure, long nights at the hospital and challenges with dialysis made the situation worse than my wildest nightmare.
When we finally had him stabilized on dialysis, we returned home, praying for a kidney transplant.
If you are new to transplants, there are two kinds for kidney transplants, deceased donor and living donor. The approximate wait times are in and around 8 years.
I have three of my own children from my first marriage and had not had any major health issues with them, thanks be to God.
Watching my stepson deteriorating in front of my eyes, watching the anguish and helplessness on my husbands face, made me feel like I had to help in any way I could.
I thought, perhaps I could find out my blood type? My husband was disqualified from donating a kidney because of his previous cancer, his ex-wife was the carrier of the syndrome, and no relative had come forward.
It turns out that we have the same blood type.
However, the process of donating a kidney is much more complicated. There are endless tests, MRI’s, CAT Scans, 69 vials of blood, cross matching, diet and exercise tests and the all important mental health assessment.
What began six months ago came to a conclusion today. All the mixing of his blood with mine has resulted in an excellent match. We have the green light to go ahead.
This is such great news! Now we need to proceed to the next step which we will find out about in the next couple of weeks!
With a living donor kidney, my stepson will get 15-20 years of good health, a far cry from dialysis and a chance for a normal life!