My son’s kidney saved my life – hairdresser tells her story

Hairdresser Wanda Dellon

By Shane Marks

Fifty-seven-year-old Wanda Dellon, a hairdresser, was diagnosed with kidney failure in 2018. This life-changing revelation brought her life to a screeching halt, but her youngest son’s love for her has changed her life completely.

Without him, she probably would not be here today to tell her story about the battle with kidney failure, and how the precious gift from her son has saved her life.

“I was diagnosed with kidney failure in 2018 because of hypertension,” she said. “My blood pressure was very high for years, so I was going to the Georgetown Public Hospital clinic, during which I was diagnosed with kidney failure.”

Initially, Wanda admitted, she did not understand the seriousness of her diagnosis. She knew that she was sick for a long time, but she did not think that she could become sicker than she already was.

She explained, “When I did diagnose with the kidney failure in 2018, I really didn’t know that it was so serious, but I was very sick.”

For some time, Wanda had been experiencing trouble with her kidney. “My feet were swelling and I was feeling so sick. And I went into the hospital, then is when I was diagnosed with kidney failure,” she said.

This diagnosis drove fear into Wanda. She said that after learning what kidney failure truly meant, she was scared. This fear, which gradually grew within her, became a dreading feeling of labour and hard work she had never experienced before.

It even got worst when she was placed on dialysis. The battling mother told Guyana Times in an interview that she wanted her life to end, because it was difficult having to live with a condition that controlled her life in every aspect.

“It wasn’t easy. They told me that I had to do dialysis. The feeling that I had, I wanted to die, because I was feeling so sick. It was a good feeling; I wanted to just die,” she opened up.

This feeling of pure hopelessness didn’t subside within Wanda, but the willing mother chose to fight and push on, because of her two sons and the people in her life that loved and cared about her.

She said, “But because of my children and my friends, good friends, they consoled and told me not to give up.”

But even with her courage to fight this medical condition, the financial struggle that the dialysis treatment comes with was an obstacle she didn’t how to overcome.

“I didn’t know what was dialysis, then when I do understand what was the dialysis, I was thinking that the money I didn’t have to pay. You have to pay for dialysis. That was my problem,” she realized.

This called for Wanda to rely on her sons and friends for financial support, so that she could receive dialysis treatment at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC).

She said that after every dialysis treatment session, she felt sick and drained, and it slowly brought back the feeling of hopelessness within her, as she couldn’t do the things she was doing before the treatment.

Wanda remained on dialysis treatment for three years, before she learned that she can do a kidney transplant surgery to rid her body of her failing kidney.

“I didn’t know that I could get a transplant done, because the dialysis center never told me that. You know, you could do a transplant if you have a donor.”

With encouragement from the transplant doctors at the GPHC, Wanda underwent a successful kidney transplant surgery. Her younger son, who is 37 years old, decided to donate his kidney to his mother.

“They say [doctors] that you are still young and you can do a kidney transplant, so I decided to go to the meetings. They tell me to take my family, I took my children, and my little son he said, ‘Mommy, I will give you one of my kidneys, all for you mom,” Wanda told this publication with tears trickling down her cheeks.

This selfless act from her son brought the pair closer than they were before, the grateful mother said. “I love both of my children, but the son that gave me the kidney, we get closer now,” she admitted.

oday, post-transplant, Wanda explained that she has made many dietary changes in her life, as she is grateful to have her life back.

“Before the transplant, I couldn’t even walk up the steps, how I was feeling so weak and so down and so stressed after dialysis. But now I can walk up the steps, I can walk and go catch transportation. I couldn’t do that. I could do things that I could not have done when I was doing the dialysis,” she said joyfully.

Wanda has celebrated five months with her new kidney, and more so, she is excited to be back at her work to attend to her clients.