NB woman a perfect match for boyfriend who needed a kidney: ‘The gift of life is the one he gave me’ – New Brunswick
This is a match that can only be explained by divine intervention.
Brittany Hay, originally from Sussex, NB, decided to move home after some time in Western Canada. Eventually, she would be set up with Colin Grieve by their mutual friends. They both describe first noticing each other casually.
“We hit it off,” Grieve said.
Five years later, the two share something even more special – a kidney.
working against the clock
Grieve was almost two years old when he was diagnosed with polycystic kidney disease (PKD) – a genetic disorder where fluid-filled cysts form on the kidneys and eventually lose their function. His father had the disorder and so did his sister.
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About a year ago, Grieve was told his kidney was functioning at about 10 percent and it was a race against the clock. The search for a living donor began.
Grieve naturally assumed that either his mother or sister would be the ideal choice, but testing, and because his sister also had the disease, determined that it would not work even though the two were a match.
Transplantation for people with PKD can be more challenging due to the genetic component of the disease, which is ruling in their family carrying the gene.
According to the PKD Foundation of Canada, about 88.3 percent of kidneys are transplanted from cadavers. It also said that outcomes are generally better when the kidney is donated from a living donor.
Having a deep desire to help, Hay decides to go through with the testing process.
“The overwhelming part of just being like, ‘I feel like I’m really going to be the match,'” she explained in an interview on Saturday. And she was.
While they waited for a surgery date, the couple underwent a procedure to help Grieve preserve his kidney function. According to the couple, his creatinine levels were high.
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Creatinine is a product in the body that the kidneys are meant to filter out, but with limited function of the kidneys, it was building up.
He said it was a miracle that he made it through Christmas without needing dialysis. The two made significant changes to their diets and began growing their own food in order to have some control over what could affect both Greaves’ kidney function and Hay’s health. Many things – like potatoes and bananas – were off-limits for a while.
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The two found out about their impending procedure on February 21, and will eventually go to the Queen Elizabeth II Health Sciences Center in Halifax – where all transplants in Atlantic Canada are performed. The surgery was done on 9 March.
Grieve will spend the rest of his life taking medications and going to medical appointments, but it’s all worth it, he said. He is now focused on keeping his new kidney healthy, formerly He’s, saying he feels the sacrifices his partner made for him.
“I was definitely more nervous than him,” he said. “I know she was in surgery before and I was literally waiting on the bed for the stretcher to come pick me up and tell me she was done and it felt like forever. (She) gave me a And given the opportunity. The gift of life is what it has essentially given me.
Both said they have a lot to be thankful for. He thanked the community, friends and family for their massive support and medical teams in both New Brunswick and Nova Scotia for helping him through the process.
And as Hay and Grieve begin their new normal, they have the perfect match for a love story.
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