Woman survives with kidneys from both parents, Dallas, Texas


DALLAS — In the sterile light of a surgical suite, doctors know what a kidney looks like.
In her room at Methodist Dallas Medical Center, Christy Wade knows what one looks like, too.
Her family.
"I'm so blessed," she said. "It's the hardest for me, because it's just so amazing that I have such a wonderful family — An extended family."
Wade has a chronic kidney disorder. Ten years ago, her father, Billy Lee, gave her one of his kidneys so she could live.
This year, that kidney started failing.
Her mother Miriam was first in line to donate one of hers.
"First I was able to give her life, and now I've been able to give her life for the second time," Miriam Lee said, "and that means so much to me."
Aunt Peggy Verhalen was right behind Miriam as a volunteer donor, and 16 other family members and friends were right behind her.
"Everything that you own, that's not important," Lee said. "It's the love that you have for your family and friends."
Now, with both her mother's and father's kidneys inside her, Christy Wade is headed home after a successful transplant.
Their message: Everyone should be an organ donor.
Outside Wade's room, there's a transplant tree. Each leaf bears the initials of a successful organ recipient at Methodist.
To Wade and her parents, though, it's a family tree; each branch needs the other to live.