Welcome to our CaringBridge website. We are using it to keep family and friends updated in one place. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement. Thank you for visiting! Emily is a junior at Northwest Christian School in Phoenix, Arizona. Her journey took an unexpected turn in January 2017 when, on her way to class, she suddenly felt a severe weakness, to the point where she couldn't climb the stairs. "I called my parents because I thought I might have strep--that was going around. I felt weak and a pain in my side which I thought might be a pulled muscle." What Emily learned from the doctors at the emergency room that day was that she was in kidney failure. She was taken to Phoenix Children's Hospital and the doctors there ultimately discovered the reason for Emily's kidney failure was a rare genetic disorder called nephronopthisis. She also learned that the only remedy available would be a kidney transplant. A healthy living donor with matching blood type would need to be found so that she could continue towards what she feels is God's plan for her life. As she looks towards the possibility of surgery this summer, she explains, "I feel pretty good about is but I want to get it over with. I'm anxious about the surgery but at the same time there are times I am ready to go. I'm mostly good but, to be honest, there are times I do feel overwhelmed."
But, as Emily reflects on the path that the Lord has her on, she is realizing that God is using this moment in her story to shape her heart and her future. "Now, as I think about God's call," Emily reflects, "because of this experience, I feel more equipped to minister to children with health challenges. Maybe I can help them through this type of an experience." Emily is now prayerfully considering a career path that might include becoming a children's chaplain in a hospital or becoming a certified Child Life specialist--an individual equipped to encourage children struggling with serious illnesses.
Until a donor is found, Emily faces three-hour dialysis sessions twice each week at this point in time. If anyone reading this senses God prompting your heart to be a kidney donor for Emily you can email the Wingo family at either firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. The basic criteria for donating a kidney to Emily is someone ages 18-55 who is not experiencing high blood pressure or diabetes and who is either blood type O or A. It makes no difference whether the blood type is positive or negative. Thank you!