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'My life is in someone else's hands': Edmontonian looking online for kidney donor

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An Edmonton woman is making a desperate plea to the public to help save her life.

Laurie Clement started noticing kidney failure symptoms around Christmas of 2010, and by July of 2011 was started on dialysis treatment in Edmonton.

After about nine months, Clement found a match: Her sister donated a kidney in July of 2013.

“Two days after transplant, the disease came back and attacked it,” she explained.

“Now I’m back at square one.”

Clement is back on dialysis with a kidney function of about seven per cent and spends six days a week at the University of Alberta Hospital.

High doses of prednisone, an anti-rejection drug, has led to other health complications. Clement now has holes in her retinas and is considered legally blind.

“I need a kidney and hopefully soon,” she said. “I want to get back to living life.”

'IT'S OUT OF MY CONTROL'

In an attempt to get the word out, Clement posted her donor plea on Facebook.

“Anything to get the word out,” she said.

Within hours of posting, Clement had received dozens of messages from people sharing their story, sending support and others asking how to help.

“It was just boom, boom, boom, constant, within just a couple minutes of it being approved,” she said.

Clement was taken aback by the community response, recalling how emotional she felt in the moment and even “hopeful" she could one day find a donor.

“It’s out of my control, my life is in someone else’s hands.”

'HOPEFULLY WE'LL FIND A MATCH'

Since the diagnosis, Clement shared that she still has so much to live for and really tries to “embrace life” now as much as possible.

“When this first happened I didn’t think I would be a grandparent,” she explained, taking a long pause to hold back the tears.

“Now I have a five-year-old grandson and I want more of that.”

The massive impact this journey has had on the family weighs heavily on Clement’s mind. She said her kidney disease is “all consuming,” and feels immense guilt about the pressure it’s put on her loved ones.

“There’s actually more bad days than good days,” Steve Clement, her husband explained. “So sometimes she’s in bed almost all day and somebody has to pick up the slack.”

“And do everything,” she added.

“It's part of my vows for better or worse, ‘I love you,’” he said, as he turned to look at her.

“I’ll do whatever I can to do it and hopefully we’ll find a match for you.”

According to Clement, 16 strangers have offered to get tested to see if they’re a match.

“I can take any blood type as long as I have someone who can donate,” she explained.

“It’s not just signing the donor card, it's donating while people are alive.”

For more information on Clement's Facebook post, click here.  

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