Nearly 100,000 people are on the waiting list for a kidney transplant in the US.
“You sit by the phone and you wait for it to ring and when it rings you hope the other end says hey we have something for you,” said Sophia Anderson, waiting for a kidney.
40-year-old Sophia Anderson has been waiting for 3 and 1/2 years for a kidney donor and her health is only getting worse.
“When it happened I just had all the fluid inside of me. It just kept building up in my feet, legs and hands and chest,” said Anderson.
With two bad kidneys, most of the time she is in dialysis, sitting in a hospital bed with needles in her arms. She even drives from Minot to Bismarck three days a week just so she can stay alive.
But who knew while driving she would meet a woman that is willing to help her find a donor.
“I was running late for a meeting and I took a turn to try to get to my destination quicker, all of sudden I saw a vehicle in front of me with a sticker on the window stating that somebody was in need of a kidney donor. So I was intrigued, said Shelle Aberle, community advocate.
Shelle Aberle knows first hand how challenging it can be waiting for that call. She has helped her husband and friend find a kidney donor. Now it’s Anderson’s turn.
“When you are on a waitlist it could be anywhere from three to seven to eight years. You don’t know when that day is. A live donor stepping forward is really critical for her and to give her quality of life sooner than later,” said Aberle.
As Anderson waits for her donor, she isn’t alone. She has her husband, kids and now Shelle to support her every step of the way. And giving up is not an option.
“My boys are everything. I promised them many years ago I would watch them grow up, have kids and get married. I am not going anywhere,” said Anderson.
According to the American kidney fund, you only need one of your two kidneys to live. There will be a go fund me account made for Sophia Anderson in the next few days. If you are interested in donating a kidney, contact your local transplant center to go through the process.
The American Kidney Fund says your risk of having kidney failure later in your life is not any higher with just one kidney.
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If you are interested in becoming a donor and have A+ or O blood type — call Jess or Mandy at the Sanford transplant center at (701) 323-2833.