It might sound like a Hallmark Christmas movie but it's real life for the Guitron family: Jonathan is getting a kidney for Christmas!
16-year-old Jonathan's parents got the call on December 5 that an anonymous living donor had come forward. His mom Nicki says, "we were definitely not expecting [to get the call] but we're beyond grateful 💚" This year on Christmas day, instead of spending the night in his bed, Jonathan will spend the night in the hospital. He and his donor will undergo simultaneous transplant surgeries on the morning of the 26th.
According to his mom, Jonathon and his dad don’t quite know how to feel right now. They are happy but both say it doesn’t seem real yet. On the other hand, mom and little sister are "nervous wrecks and full of emotions! We are so excited for him and his future. He will be able to go to school on a regular basis and even get a job which he has been wanting to do but with dialysis, school and life he couldn’t. A lot of positive changes. A new normal I suppose since our normal looks a lot different than others."
For Christmas, the family is going to celebrate a few days early with a relaxing dinner. On Christmas Eve, they'll attend church and then report to the hospital on Christmas morning.
Nicki says, "This has been a lot to process for our family. I personally am quite overwhelmed because I am a worrier and have been the primary caregiver for Jonathon. It has been mommy’s job to worry about everything so Jonathon could try to be a kid as much as someone with kidney disease can. I will have some adjustments as well. I don’t know what to say. We are so grateful beyond words.
This is a dream come true and honestly the definition of a Christmas miracle."
Jonathan and his family attended our Teens & Young Adults event this past June. His parents learned from experts and got to speak with other parents. Jonathan and his younger sister learned about snacking right, the importance of medical adherence, and most importantly - they met other teens and siblings who are living with kidney disease or transplants.
We wish Jonathan and his donor speedy recoveries and many years of being kidney strong!
For more information on living donation, click here.