Stetson woman on waiting list for kidney
April is National Donate Life Month.
Across the country, there are more than 100,000 people on a waiting list for a transplant.
Whitney Messier from Stetson is one of them.
"My body may be weak, but I don't consider myself to be a weak person,” said Messier.
We first introduced you to Whitney Messier in January 2018.
She's been battling Cystic Fibrosis since she was three months old.
"I've been in and out of the hospital three, four, ten times a year my whole life especially towards the end before my transplant,” Messier explained.
At that time, Whitney was in the hospital.
A few weeks before, she was on life support and waiting for a lung transplant.
That transplant was successful, but now she needs a new kidney.
"The two factors of being on life support and then the medication after my transplant, I knew someday I would need a kidney,” said Messier. “I just didn't know it would be this soon."
Now 32, Whitney is still fighting.
She's on dialysis and is waiting for a match.
Due to the coronavirus, many transplant centers have suspended all living donor transplants in order to mitigate the spread of infection.
Whitney could receive a donation from someone who has died, but that could be lengthy process.
She's encouraging everyone to give the gift of life.
"One person can save several peoples' lives just by being a donor,” said Messier. "We might not be a match, but you can still save somebody else, so I would encourage everyone to sign up."
Whitney says she's doing her best to stay positive even amid COVID-19.
She's an avid writer and has started a blog.
She also helps manage a Facebook page called 'Kidney for Whitney.'
Whitney worries that she or her family will become ill, but she's also concerned for those battling the virus.
"I've already been on a ventilator once, and I don't want to do it again. I feel so bad for the people that are on that because I know what it's like, and I know what it's like for their family. I couldn't imagine going through that at a time when your family wasn't allowed to visit you,” said Messier.
She encourages everyone to adhere to the advice of medical professionals.
"I think it's important to wear a mask and wash your hands, and just try to stay safe if you do have to go out. Hopefully, we can all come together and beat this thing. I will keep fighting for as long as I have to. I hope this thing passes for everyone,” said Messier.
One organ donation could save up to eight lives.
To learn more about being a living donor visit: https://www.mghlivingdonors.org/?fbclid=IwAR2g3AorPncgt1hnDALYJ7FvKR9r1BHjRC1Sc9Xu4Fk42kbPuN6XDzCqsRw
To follow Whitney's journey visit her website: https://www.thephilosophicalphenomenon.com/.