That Time I (Hopefully) Gave Away A Kidney – Part 7 (Saying No To People Who Asked For A Kidney)

June 29, 2014

plastic model of kidneys
A plastic model of kidneys from the transplant office

Time for another installment of this Wednesday/Sunday night series!

Picking up from last time

I’d been approved to start the process.

Since they told me that even if I weren’t a match for the original guy, I could give to another person – I was sure I was going to be giving a kidney here. (Bahaha… Little did I know…)

Anyway, I took that time to respond back to everyone on MatchingDonors, saying I was no longer looking for someone. I’d found my hospital.

It was a little heart-wrenching to basically say, “You know how you really, really wanted a kidney and you’re super nice and all, well you can’t have mine. Good luck!”

(Obviously I phrased it better than that (I hope!). But it still felt callous and rough nonetheless.)

Some didn’t respond, which is totally fine. I mean, what are you really going to say? Some responded with encouraging words, thanking for me for working toward be a living kidney donor at all – even if it wasn’t to them.

Some weren’t done fighting for themselves, saying if anything went wrong in the process and I had to start with a new person or go somewhere else to please keep them in mind.

At the time I thought, “Like that could ever happen.” But now I see that they’ve been on the list long enough to know the process is not always as smooth as one would hope.

legend explaining a plastic kidney model
It’s kinda hard to see, but here’s the legend of the model, if ya need it.

And good for them for fighting for themselves (even if some came off a little pushy or desperate – heck, I’d come off that way too if I needed a kidney!).

However, I was certain at this point that no matter what, I would not be using Matching Donors anymore. Nothing against the website. But in all this learning about the kidney process, I found out that you can just go to a hospital and say, “Hey there, I’d like to give a kidney to whomever needs it.”

(Why in the world don’t they make that so much clearer in online articles?!)

We’ll get into why I’d SO much rather give to a stranger than pick the person later, but for now, suffice it to say that once I knew that was an option, I was done with forever.

And this is where I’ll pick up on next time.

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