Talge Hall associate dean Kevin Pride remembers how it all started back in 2016. That was the year his health problems initially surfaced, beginning with a mild heart attack and continuing into unattended diabetes, which led to his present-day need for a live kidney donor.
The search for a live donor began this past Dec. after Pride’s doctor suggested it as the next course of action. With the help of his niece, he was able to make a Facebook post to spread the word. The post currently has 682 shares and counting.
As of right now, Pride said his health has not interrupted his work life, although in the future it potentially could.
The greatest help in this process of kidney failure was been his time spent at the Wildwood Lifestyle Center. During his 25 days at the center, Pride was able to drastically change eating and sleeping habits. The reset of his habits caused the kidney failure to slow down, and he has yet to go on dialysis.
Despite great struggle, Pride’s situation has not affected his faith.
“God has a way of allowing things to happen, which leads us to him,” Pride said.
Staying optimistic during hard times can be difficult, but Pride said that after his time at Wildwood Lifestyle Center, he hasn’t been upset about the situation.
During times of anxiety he believes that God leads him to Scripture. To remind himself to stay positive, his computer screensaver reads 1 Chronicles 28:20: “Be strong and courageous, and do the work. Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord God, my God, is with you. He will not fail you or forsake you until all the work for the service of the temple of the Lord is finished.”
Pride has been able to find a strong support group, from his family back in Alabama to people here at Southern. He said his coworkers have always been supportive, especially when it comes to covering for him at work. And of course, there have also been students who have watched out for him and cared for him.
Talge student worker and junior mass communication major Kehiry Castillo recalls her first encounter with Pride. She met him during her interview for her current position. After feeling nervous at the beginning, his cheery personality made her more comfortable.
“I don’t think I’ve ever seen him having a bad day,” Castillo said. “He always has a smile on his face.”
Although he said he is usually a private person when it comes to his health, Pride felt like it was necessary to share what was going on. Pride’s search for a live organ donor is the best chance he has in order to avoid the long waiting list for a kidney transplant. Sharing the post will increase the likelihood of finding a live donor for Pride.
For anyone interested in seeing if they are a match, one can check at http://www.emoryhealthcare.org/centers-programs/kidney-transplant-program/living-donor for more information to start the screening process.
Image credit: Joseph Hyde