Out With the Old–In With the New (Kidney)

Today was the first day post-kidney transplant.  I would be lying to you if I told you it went smoothly.  Besides Marielle sharing our family secrets with random medical professionals, she struggled with lots of pain and anxiety.

Marielle is so confused due to medications, they she hasn’t fully realized that she has a new kidney.  She thinks we are trying to trick her.  Little does she know that not only did she get a new kidney, doctors had to remove both of her old kidneys (they were causing her high blood pressure) and do a bowel resection (prior liver transplant adhesions complicated access for the new kidney).

When she does believe us that she got her new kidney, she looks down at her stomach and becomes so upset.  Originally doctors were to make a small incision on her right side.  Instead, because of the complications, doctors had to do a very large incision from the bottom of her chest to her groin.  It was not what we had wanted, but it was necessary to save her life.

The next few days will continue to be touch and go.  Her kidney function is perfect.  It’s just managing all the medications, their side effects and the ongoing threat of organ rejection.

Please continue to keep my Sunshine Girl in your prayers.  But please, say a special prayer for the family who donated their child’s kidney to save my daughter’s life.  I will be forever grateful that this amazing family was able to make the decision in spite of their grief.

With friendship,




  1. simply a miracle. you must still be in shock, it all happened so quickly. good vibes and power of he universe for the healing of your little girl. her life will surely ease the grief of the family who helped save her life.

  2. Lisa, You are so good to take the time to keep us updated. Will definitely keep Marielle, your family, and the donor’s family in my thoughts and prayers.

  3. Lisa,
    Please know there are hundreds, if not thousands, praying for your little Sunshine Girl- and the donor family.

    Just keep believing that God provided this miracle and He will be faithful to see it through! Your Sunshine will be beaming soon!

  4. Oh Lisa! Give marielle a big hug. We are praying for Sweet marielle to have a smooth recovery & back to her normal teenage self in no time!! Prayers going out to your family and the donor’s family! Lots of love, Beth

  5. Lisa, I am still out of town and have limited computer access, but every time I get to a computer and can get online, I check in here to see what is happening. I am on the west coast and will be headed to LA in the next few days.

    I am thrilled that Marielle got her new kidney! You are both such amazing and strong women! I can’t even begin to tell you how much admiration I have for both of you! Bless your hearts! You got your wish for Christmas–that new kidney for your beautiful daughter, but I know that there will continue to be ups and downs until things settle down and Marielle recovers fully. And I know that she will make a full recovery and do amazing things in life because she has already shown the world what a fighter she is!

    I will continue thinking of you and check in here as often as possible.

    Hugs to you and your whole family!

  6. This is amazing and I will keep you all in my thoughts as you get through healing, meds and followups….and yes my heart goes out to the family of the other child

  7. I’ve been lurking here for months, so this appropriate for my first comment:


  8. I am so so happy that she has her new kidney, and so grateful to the family who made the right decision.

  9. (((HUGS))) to you all and especially the parent of the donor child. I’ll keep you all in my thoughts and send healing wishes, both physical and mental, to you all.

    Thanks for sharing your Sunshine Girl’s story.


  10. Thanks for the update and, of course, prayers will continue to come your way. Special prayers to those who donate. Several years ago, at the age of 70, my father in law received the heart of a 28 year old woman. It saved his life and we will always be grateful. It’s a powerful thing to experience. Hang in there.

  11. Lisa,
    Our thoughts are with you, Marielle, your family, and of course the donor family.
    Thank you for keeping us updated via the blog. Although we’ve never met, Marielle’s story has deeply touched many of us in recent weeks. While there’s little doubt the coming days and weeks will bring challenges, Marielle is clearly a fighter and I have no doubt that she will rise to each challenge.
    I can’t imagine a better holiday/new year’s gift than that which you’ve shared with both friends and strangers.


  12. Marielle is her mother’s daughter. 🙂 Keeping y’all in my thoughts and close to my heart as she recovers from this life-saving surgery.

  13. So happy for your family! Best wishes for your daughter’s speedy recovery!

  14. My family and I will continue to pray for your daughter, your family and the donor’s family. Thank you for the update. God Bless.

  15. Hang in there, Lisa…we haven’t interacted via Twitter, but saw your circumstances Twittered about…can only offer my best wishes and most positive thoughts to youm your daughter and your family

  16. wonderful news. I have been praying for you and Marielle! I only hope the kidney is accepted by her body and all works perfect! Keep posting so everyone will know the updates.

  17. Big hugs for M. , and the rest of the family. Its a lot to take in for her – she has been so strong for so long. So sending special hugs and prayers.

    Anna says HI too.

  18. Lisa, my daughter in law lost a child from her first marriage, when he was 10. She STILL thinks of the children his organs helped to get past the pain of losing him. She comforts herself in the knowledge that his eyes and many of his organs have lived on and given someone else life and happiness.
    I am praying that each hour becomes easier for Marielle, and all of you!

  19. Hang in there, Lisa. Each day will get better and better. God is good.

  20. I’m so glad to hear that Mariel has a functioning new kidney. I’m sorry things didn’t go so smoothly, but she has been in my prayers for some time and will continue to stay there.

  21. God Bless you and your family and the family of this child that allows your precious daughter to be alive today — I pray for all of you….I am so happy to hear of this good news! God Bless you!!!!

  22. still praying…for you all, and the donor family.

    hugs to you all.

  23. Hi Lisa,

    Your story touches me SO much. I am certainly praying for Marielle. I am SO glad that she has a new kidney, and I am praying that the recovery goes well. I cannot imagine how exhausted and worried you must feel.


  24. Thank God for miracles. I am so glad to hear this part of your journey is over. Now at least you can continue to move forward

  25. Glad to hear that the kidney is functioning. We’re praying that all continues to go well, and that she will come to terms with the good news and big scar very soon.
    Hope you’re getting some rest, Mom!

  26. May the awesome GOD of the Universe continue to keep you in his hand, protecting all your family — and giving you peace.
    Bonnie in Seattle

  27. 6 months from now, you won’t remember the trauma of these days. Look to the future. She is going to be confused and drugged for the short run. Don’t let that impede your joy!

  28. May they feel the strength of life’s continuance, and be comforted.

    May that strength be with you, and your Sunshine Girl. She has come through so much…I hate that she is in pain, but pray that it is the pain of HEALING and that very, VERY soon she will be the carefree child she is meant to be.

    …and herself enough to do a good teenager eye-roll at the idea of someone calling her a “child”…

  29. I’m so glad she got the kidney and that it’s being accepted. I will pray that things start to move smoother. 🙂 I am so happy for you all though.

  30. So happy to hear it went well Lisa, you have been in my thoughts 🙂 wishing Marielle a speedy recovery and hope that she will be on her way to good health soon 🙂

  31. So Happy for Sunshine Girl. Thoughts and Prayers continuing for an easy recovery. The New Year is definitely looking brighter.


  32. This is wonderful news! I pray that she will be pain free soon and that the kidney continues to function well.

  33. Prayers and thoughts always.

  34. Lisa…I just wanted to let you know that Marielle, you, and your family are in my prayers and praises today. For those of you who are reading this…we all have a lot to be thankful for and know that the holy spirit is working in each and everyone of us. Please take a moment to pray for this family and also your loved ones…Susan

  35. Lisa,
    Praying for Marielle, the doctors and YOU for a quick, smooth recovery.

  36. I’m so happy for you guys! *big darn internet hugs all around*

  37. I will continue to pray for your sweet girl. I can not imagine what you have all been going through as you fight this battle. And what a blessed gift the donor’s family gave. May they know they are angels here on earth and in heaven. Prayers of health in the new year!

  38. Thinking of the whole family, Lisa and Marielle. Best wishes for a Happy New Year and a quick recovery for your Sunshine Girl!

  39. I am always humbled by people who see through their own pain to save another life.

    That actions like this continue to exist in a world such as ours is a miracle in and of itself.

  40. Prayers and hugs to Marielle and your family. Hopefully the new year can bring happiness, healing and health all around.

  41. Lisa

    wow. You do almost think that with the new kidney now everything will be fine but I see she still has obstacles. I will keep praying for your beautiful girl. You take care of yourself as well! I know you are going in 50 different directions
    Many wishes for a peaceful and healthy! 2009

  42. I am following your daughter’s progress and keeping her in my prayers. You might want to post to Twitter as so many are concerned. God bless, Julie

  43. I’m so happy to hear that Marielle is doing well…bless you all and i’m wishing you and your family a wonderful New Year Lisa.

    With love,

  44. Oh Lisa, I cannot imagine the mix of your emotions right now–sheer joy for Miss M’s new kidney, anxiety for her recovery, sadness that the incision was longer than expected, and sweet gratitude for the donor family as they grieve their own loss. You are one amazing woman that is for sure. You, Marielle, and the donor family are in my prayers. Keep the faith girl–your sunshine girl will be shining even more brightly by the hour. In loving support, Eva

  45. Oh Lisa, your sweet girl has been through SO much!! I pray her recovery speeds along, she has a wonderful life to get back to!
    I’m so thrilled you guys came back to Philly, still hoping to see you before you leave, after Marielle’s feeling a little better. 🙂

  46. Thanks for updating! I have been praying for Marielle and a quick recovery. Glad to hear things are going well with the new kidney. I will keep the family that donated the kidney in my prayers…….they have done a wonderful thing in donating their child’s organs.

  47. Lisa, it’s taking all my will power not to call you right now. I’m sure you’re bombarded with calls and emails. I hope you know how much I love you sweetie and how hard I’ve been praying for your beautiful girl. Hang in there, and feel the immense love of your friends and family around you!!

    Sending you a BIG HUGE Squeeze from Canada!! XOXO

  48. Thank G-d! This truly is a time of miracles.
    Recovery is slow and (as you already mentioned) learning the medication routines takes time, but you are blessed. It is all good.
    Best to you, your family, and your Sunshine Girl!

  49. My prayers are with you and your family.

  50. Please know that we are praying every day for you, your beautiful daughter and the family that donated their daughter’s kidney.

  51. Hang in there Lisa, I just know that she’ll be fine. I am just grateful to hear the news that the kidney was found and surgery is performed. Looking forward to more good news.

  52. What an intense way to begin 2009! Thoughts, prayers and best wishes for you, your family and the donor family.

  53. I am so thrilled to hear that Marielle received a new kidney! That is wonderful news!
    I will continue to pray for her and the family.
    Many Blessings to come in 2009.

  54. Lisa, I have been following this with deep thoughts and prayers. I know how long hospital stays can be and I know you have been there many times with M, but keep the smile on your face. God has given you so much strength and you have been given such a gift!
    All my love and prayers ,

  55. I will be praying for your Sunshine Girl ! She seems to be about my own daughter’s age. May God bless her with a very speedy recovery. God Bless You and yours and have a Happy New Year!

  56. My first post here and lemme just say that God always comes right on time, doesn’t he? So very saddened to read all that you and your family have been thru, but in the same breath, sooo happy to hear your daughter recieved her long awaited kidney and praise God for the dear ones who donated it. That had to be very hard to do. I cannot even begin to imagine what all of you have been thru, but know that our hearts go out to you, our prayers go with you and may God watch over your sweet baby and help her body to accept this gift and to heal quickly.

  57. I found you via Twitter, but I have to say that I needed to read of someone’s good news today. 🙂 I’ll keep your family in my prayers. New year, new lease on life, eh? It’s wonderful news. I’ll add the donor family to my prayers, as well.

    Blessings, and here’s to a better year than the last.

  58. HOORAY! I’ll be praying that recovery goes well and the kidney “takes”. That’s awesome, what a great way to start ’09!
    Best to you and your daughter.

  59. As always Lisa, your precious daughter and your family are in my prayers. God bless and much love.


  60. Lisa, I am so happy to read this update that I am crying.

    I am sending a strong force your way that everyone stays strong. Your sunshine girl is in my thoughts.

    Un abrazo grande (big hug)!

  61. That is the most fantastic news! The best gift someone could have possibly given. Much health and happiness in the continued years.

  62. Such wonderful news Lisa! So happy to hear all this!!

    Hugs to you all, especially Marielle!

  63. Lisa I hope you and your family are enjoying this wonderful gift and having a wonderful new year! I wanted to drop you a little note and let you know as I sat with my little guy the other night at the childrens hospital waiting for surgery on his broken arm I sat in tears loooking at him and thought about you guys and thought WOW if lisa can be this positive and strong mom I can too You made me smile in a sad time and I thank you for sharing your story with us all!

  64. wow! Poor girl has been through so much! I’ll continue to keep her in my prayers and I hope she has a speedy recovery and that everything goes smoothly.


  1. […] compiled 10 ways social media has been used to improve lives in 2008  including the example of The Domestic Diva , a blogger who through the help of other bloggers spread the word about her daughter’s need […]

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