Aaron Wiley went to a Dallas jeweler and ended up with a new kidney
When Pratt learned during her design appointment that Aaron was on dialysis treatment because the kidney Erleigh had given him about 10 years earlier, she knew she wanted to help, she said.
“Aaron had been to the store a couple of times and although I didn’t know him well, I knew he was a good person,” she said. “I went home and said to my husband,” I’m going to try to give Aaron my kidney. “
“We lived peaceful lives, drank wine and enjoyed the pool in our back yard, and Aaron was on dialysis three or four times a week,” added Pratt, 59. “I thought, ‘This is something I can do to fix this problem. I can improve his life. ‘”
After some rigorous testing, Pratt found that she was a perfect match for her. And on August 25, she gave one of her kidneys to Wiley during a four-hour transplant at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas, where she and the Wileys live.
The operation went smoothly and Wiley had a chance to lead a normal life, said Eric J. Martinez, Pratt’s transplant surgeon.
“It is a chance for him to feel good again and free himself from the inconvenience and burden of dialysis,” he said.
Martinez added, “Giving yourself to help another live longer, healthier lives is truly priceless. Sometimes living donors minimize the impact of their gift, but recipients and their loved ones forever cherish the compassionate donation decision. We need more people like Jennifer in the world. “
Wiley, a lawyer in a private practice, did well on the kidney his wife gave him in 2008 after developing kidney disease, he said. But in 2017, his body suddenly refused and he ended up in the emergency room.
“He woke up with a stomachache and said he was going to lie down,” recalls Erleigh, who works as the district attorney for Kaufman County. “He looked terrible. I said to him, “Either let me take you to the doctor or I’ll call an ambulance.” ”
At the hospital, Wiley learned that his donated kidney had failed and that he would need dialysis treatments every other day. He was also told that because none of his other family members were a good match for him, he would have to put his name on a list of some 250,000 others waiting for a kidney on the national organs’ waiting list unless he could Own living donors on his find.
“I knew I would be on that waiting list for five or six years,” he said. “It was very disheartening. On dialysis, you’re just waiting to die. “
Aaron kept working for nearly three years, he said, planning his itinerary to include four-hour dialysis treatments that he would choose every other night.
Although he and Erleigh had to skip vacation because of his dialysis treatments, they learned to enjoy little pleasures, said Aaron Wiley.
“I like to buy their gifts for every vacation,” he said. “Seven years ago I bought her a diamond tennis bracelet and a matching necklace, but the necklace never fell straight onto her neck. She never wore it, so finally on her birthday that year I said, “Let’s renew the necklace.” ”
On May 5th, the Wileys returned to JPratt Designs, where Aaron had previously taken Erleigh’s wedding ring to upgrade the diamonds.
Jennifer Pratt designs the studio’s jewelry while her husband Jeff Pratt creates the pieces. It wasn’t until she offered the Wileys a glass of water that she found out that Aaron Wiley had kidney disease and was waiting for a donor.
“Erleigh said,” He’s out of water – he’s on dialysis and needs to limit his intake, “recalls Jennifer Pratt.” I started asking questions and was told it was about six years before I got a new one (Corpse) kidney. I felt terrible and knew what he had been through. “
The next day, she said, they did a blood test and saw whether they would be a good match as a donor.
“When I found out we had the same blood type, I texted him and told him I would give him one of my kidneys if I could get through the rest of the testing process,” she said.
Aaron Wiley said he and Erleigh were stunned.
“It was an emotional moment – I knew she was serious because that’s the kind of person Jennifer is,” he said. “What do you say to someone who wants to give you such an incredible gift? I was speechless.”
After additional research and consultation, a transplant date was set for August 25th at Baylor University Medical Center.
“I was all for it, and everyone else who found out about it,” said Jeff Pratt. “People who know Jennifer know how much heart and spirit she gives. She wanted to have a positive and lasting influence on Aaron’s life. “
On the morning of the transplant, Aaron Wiley told Jennifer Pratt there were no words to express his gratitude, he said.
“He didn’t have to say anything – I knew what it meant to him,” said Jennifer Pratt. “I wasn’t even nervous. It was in the hands of the Lord and I felt good. “
When she visited Aaron in his room the morning after the surgery, Jennifer said she knew the transplant was a success.
“He looked so much better – there was color on his face,” she said. “And next to his bed was a half-full urine bag. ‘Look!’ I said him. “My kidney is working!” ”
Now that she and Aaron are relaxing in their homes, they are both looking forward to the day they can really party.
“Jennifer is proof that angels really do exist on earth,” said Erleigh. “She is a person of action who has never wavered. We’ll never be able to thank her enough. “