Kristin’s Story: National Kidney Month

Today, I am sharing a story that is near and dear to my heart because it is from my best friend, Kristin (who I’ve been bugging to “guest post” for months!).

We met as Theta sisters at TCU and have been inseparable ever since! So inseparable in fact that we have actually been working at the same ad agency for over three years now since moving to Dallas. She is someone who has been by my side through all of life’s ups and downs both in college and after graduation. I’m so grateful for her continued friendship over the years! And I’m excited that she agreed to share her story with us today!

Here’s Kristin:

I’m not the type of person that cries at work. I think it’s pretty unprofessional. That’s why when I found myself crying in a conference room a little over two years ago I wasn’t prepared.

Being that I live in Texas, I was unprepared for the visits home. At first, it was easier to be in denial — my dad seemed fine when we talked on the phone and just a little more tired when I saw him. But the slow decline in his physical and mental capacity was brought much more into focus because I wasn’t with him everyday. When he began peritoneal dialysis at home it was apparent that no matter if I was prepared or unprepared, my dad was dying. Realizing that it may take years to receive an organ from the National Organ Transplant List my parents started sharing their situation with family and good friends hopeful that someone may be a “match” and consider making the ultimate sacrifice as a live donor; they never asked me. But I didn’t need to be asked. I got tested.

dad old

I cried at work because I was a match. While not “perfect” meeting only four out of the six criteria, it was good enough to be a donor. I was unprepared for the overwhelming feeling that I would finally be able to give back to someone that has given me so much in life — has given me life.

Shortly after my test came through, we got a separate call saying there was a rare six out of six match for him, and since it was “perfect” he was the recipient of a kidney! But there may be a time in the future where my dad will need a kidney, and I will give it to him — without a doubt. I think this is why God gave me two kidneys anyway. So take it; I don’t need both, but you can’t take my Dad — there’s only one of those.IMG_6213

National Kidney Month ends today (the whole month of March). Friends, 26 million Americans are living with kidney disease and another 73 million are at risk. Those numbers are astounding!

Kristin, her dad and the rest of her family are raising money and participating in a kidney walk to help fight kidney disease. If you would like to donate to her team, please click here. Any donation amount helps!

When you donate to the National Kidney Foundation you are joining the fight against kidney disease by:

  • Raising public awareness about kidney disease and risk reduction.
  • Providing free local health screenings.
  • Supporting kidney patients, organ donors and their families.
  • Advocating in Washington, D.C. for government action on the organ donor shortage, funding kidney research and defending Medicare coverage.
  • Educating doctors and other healthcare professionals with the best information in the field. Last year, 64,500 healthcare professionals were kept up to date through NKF’s Kidney Learning Solutions.

Thank you, Kristin for sharing your story! And we are so glad that your dad is doing so well with his new kidney!!

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