Lola Johnson


Our daughter, Lola, was diagnosed with Wilms Tumor Cancer at only 10 months old. Bilateral tumors on both kidneys. At 14 months old, she had over 1lb of tumors removed along with her right kidney and partial left kidney (chemo calcified the right kidney & partial left to ensure all cancer cells were taken). Lola completed 26 weeks of Chemo in Jan 2017 & was considered "in remission" & had such a successful outcome that her chemo port was removed the same month. Lola did amazing through chemo and met all her milestones & didn't let it hold her back!

Lola survived for 3 years with no issues with only a partial kidney until it ultimately failed at age 4. We then performed Peritoneal Dialysis 7 nights/week & 12 hours/night for the next 3 years at home. That was such a challenging time for her...she was such a different child. Always tired, no energy, no appetite. Lola missed out on 3 years of no swimming, no sleepovers, no traveling, and being tethered to her dialysis machine every single night by 7pm.

In May 2022, Lola was finally activated on the transplant list. We will never forget the night of November 19, 2022 when we got the call. It was 9:20pm & the nurse was so confident it was the perfect match, she helped Lola name her new kidney: "Turkey", respectively. By 3pm on November 20th 2022, the first incision was made. By 4:30pm, Lola's new kidney had great blood flow & by 6pm, Turkey was producing urine!

Lola was up and walking the halls within 24 hours of receiving her life-saving kidney transplant. We spent 25 days in the hospital - missing Thanksgiving, but made it home just in time for Christmas.

About 2 months post-transplant, the transformation we began to witness in our mighty little warrior was one unlike any other! We were literally meeting our 7 year old daughter all over again. Lola was full of energy, playing with her sisters, laughing, being silly, brave & coming into her own...oh yeah, and eating as if she was making up for the 3 years she didn't. It was incredible to witness.

Although, at times, it was difficult for her to see how much better life had become, because of the lab draws 2x/week, spiking fevers every AM/PM, the overwhelming fluid requirement, & the 7 month quarantine - again, she powered through it all, flourishing & never giving up. The first 7 months post-transplant was one of the most challenging time periods ever for our entire family, especially for Lola.

Today, as we are embarking on the 1 year anniversary - Lola is doing amazing!! She has been traveling, attending school in person & just living her very best life!!

We are eternally grateful to the family of the donor who made the choice to donate life & even though we don't know who they are...whoever they are, they will always be an angel in our hearts!