With a large sticker on her Jeep Grand Cherokee spreading the message that her son desperately needs a kidney, Beth Webster, 58, is doing her best to save his life, according to MetroWest Daily News.
Webster’s son Mitchell was diagnosed with end-stage renal failure nearly two years ago, according to WCVB.
As a part-time worker at Framingham State University in Massachusetts, Webster has put bumper stickers and magnets on her Jeep as she continues the search for a kidney for her son. She’s even texted people, asking them to become kidney donors.
There’s a Facebook page, Matching Mitchell, dedicated to her son’s cause and flyers have been handed out in Framingham and Northborough, Massachusetts.
There’s been plenty of buzz about Mitchell’s need for a kidney in the community where Webster lives. People have even taken to slipping notes on her Jeep to offer support and share their story.
Yet, despite Webster’s efforts, she has not located a kidney for her son.
“I feel that to get one person, we have to reach thousands,” Webster told WCVB.
Webster is deep-rooted in the Framingham community where she lives. She and her husband Dean have three boys – Mitchell, Aaron, 23, and Ryan, 17.
Webster’s boys grew up attending local schools and Mitchell graduated in 2015 from the Keefe Regional Technical High School having completed the culinary program. But the family noticed something different as he began to physically slow down during college.
Mitchell was having trouble getting through the day, and in February 2017 he woke up and began vomiting. He got sick again when he went to work.
Thinking it was just a stomach bug, Mitchell visited his doctor. His blood pressure was high, and he underwent a multitude of tests including a biopsy. That was when doctors identified that Mitchell’s kidneys had failed.
“Even when they told us that, you’re still kind of in shock because just not having any family history, you just don’t what you’re in for,” Webster told WCVB.
The diagnosis was a shock as Mitchell had not had any previous serious medical problems.
“You just keep going back and you try to figure out what happened, but the medical community, they move on really quick and … they acknowledge that we’ve gotten this shock, but they’re focused on getting Mitchell the kidney and the care that he would need,” Webster told WCVB.
Mitchell has since had surgery four times to insert a passageway in his arm for the dialysis treatments he receives three times per week at Fresenius Kidney Care.
“I usually just come home and go to bed after because it takes a lot out,” Mitchell told WCVB. “Usually the next day I feel OK. And then … not great.”
The constant worry if a kidney donor will be found, has put a significant strain on the family as Mitchell has been added to the national organ sharing registry, which has about 114,000 people waiting for a kidney.
“Every month I kind of think, like, this is the month that I get the kidney,” Mitchell told WCVB.
To pass the time, he watches movies and plays video games. His mom said the distractions are useful; otherwise, it can be exhausting to dwell on the wait.
“I guess we just need to get it in front of the right person,” Webster added.
To help Mitchell or anyone else that needs a kidney is a true gift and one that more people should consider.
To see if you can become a kidney donor for Mitchell or another patient that needs a transplant, you can contact UMass Memorial Transplant Center at 508-334-1269 or visitumassmemorialhealthcare.org.
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