Watch the delightful moment between them.
Video Credit: Facebook/Stanley Barsch
Medical science has a solution to all problems. It has removed numerous diseases, and restored the limbs and faces of the serious injury and even beaten deadly cancer. There is one challenge that medical science faces when it comes to one area: organ transplant. It’s not fully in hand of doctors to find out the donor and doctors have a hard time shunting a liver or a heart from one person to another.
The supply of available organs is really limited. One retired police officer did something commendable into this matter when he decided to increase that supply by one when her former partner found it badly. 41-year-old Stanley Barsch from Middletown, Maryland found that he had polycystic kidney disease in 2002. His mother, who also suffers from the disease, was looking for a donor.
“I went through all the testing, and in the final phase I found out I too had the same disease,” Barsch told Liftable, a section of The Western Journal.
“It was devastating, but from the aspect that I was trying to save my mother’s life and wasn’t able to provide her the gift of life that I desperately wanted,” he told Liftable. “She ended up on dialysis until 2005 until she got a cadaver kidney, and she passed away in 2017 with a weak heart and sepsis.”
According to Barsch, his kidneys became oversized approximately 15-20 pounds each. “The average kidney weighs .25 LBS,” he said.
“The massive cysts caused my function to drop steadily over the past couple years. I started losing a lot of my energy noticeably in the past few years,” he said. “This past December I entered stage 5 kidney failure, and with 17% function and dropping I desperately needed a kidney.”
So he shared on social media, told to his friends, family, and colleagues that he needed a new organ.
31 people responded, and 36-year-old Megan Ambrose was one of them and also the first one to respond, the first one to set up the appointment and the first one to go for testing. Ambrose was Barsch’s former partner while he was a police officer.
After the tests she learned that she was a perfect match, so she planned to surprise Barsch.
“There are no words that do our partnership justice,” Ambrose told PEOPLE. “You experience things with your partner that you can’t really explain. … He’s my ride or dies.”
“I knew that Megan was going in for testing, and MedStar Georgetown put the other applications on hold but wouldn’t tell me why,” Barsch told Liftable. “Turns out later Megan matched 100%, but no one told me.”
Ambrose knows this in the middle of January but wanted to discuss it with her husband first and family. “Later in January she asked if I and my wife Jessica would meet with her and her husband Chris,” he said. “We didn’t know if she wasn’t going to be able to do it, wasn’t a great match, was scared to do it or what. We didn’t know what to expect.”
The two couples met on February 14, which is both Valentine’s Day and National Donor Day, she invited them to her home.
When they meet at Ambrose, she handed them a card.
Barsch posted photos of the card on Facebook. The front side reads, “So I heard urine need of a kidney …” When Barsch flipped it open, he read, “Want mine?”
“Turns out that we are a perfect match, not only on the job but in blood and organs, too. You always had my back on the road and off. Now you can have my kidney.”
Barsch burst into tears immediately. After his wife hugged Ambrose, he also hugged her.
Afterward, he posted, “Two nights ago, my late Sergeant … visited me in my dreams, he had some jokes for me. This should have been a sign.”
The surgery happened on May 14. It was successful, Barsch said on Facebook that the surgeon declared that Ambrose’s kidney was “beautiful.”
“Megan was released from the hospital Wednesday afternoon,” Barsch told Liftable. “She is on Tylenol and heating pad, her pain will slowly fade in the next few days. Her recovery time is 4-6 weeks. I’m leaving the hospital this afternoon (Friday) and my recovery time is 1 month.”
“We were always close, now we are one. We are bonded for life, she is more than a sister that I never wanted.”
Barsch wants to tell people the importance of a donor that he hopes people will learn from their story. “Share your spare, it is the most amazing and rewarding gift you can ever give. The pain is short-lived, for a life given forever. You don’t have to be an exact match, you can do a paired exchange, there are so many ways to donate. The gift of life is amazing!”
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