Woman Devastated After Long-Awaited Kidney Transplant Is Canceled Due to Hurricane Michael
Angel Goss says she was "crushed" when she learned earlier this month that she wouldn't undergo her long-awaited kidney transplant due to Hurricane Michael
Angel Goss was “overjoyed” earlier this month when Ohio doctors told her they had finally found her a donor kidney after 10 long years. But the mom of three’s hope for a new life was sadly taken away from her when Hurricane Michael made landfall on Oct. 10.
Just two days before the storm touched down in Florida, doctors in Cincinnati told Goss that they had finally found a living organ that was the perfect match for Goss, 38. Excited, she told her family the good news before heading to Columbus for the surgery.
“I was overjoyed when I got that phone call. I didn’t know what to say. I called my mother, I told my children and I was ready!” she tells PEOPLE. “I thought God answered my prayers because I had been waiting for so long.”
Goss learned the day before her 29th birthday that she was suffering from kidney failure. She has been on dialysis ever since.
Goss arrived at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center on Oct. 10, eager to undergo the surgery the next day. She says she became concerned when she was left waiting in her hospital bed for several hours on the day of the surgery, and was devastated when she found out why.
“They said the kidney is stuck in the hurricane, they can’t get it here,” Goss recalls. “I was crushed. I had been waiting so long. It’s already hard to find me a match. I was angry, I was sad.”
The donor kidney Goss was supposed to receive was stuck on a grounded plane in South Carolina as the hurricane brought strong rains and heavy winds to the Carolinas. After being on the plane for so long, the organ would no longer be viable when it eventually arrived in Ohio.
She was discharged from the hospital and returned home without the new organ. Days later, Goss says she learned that the kidney had been given to a patient in the area.
“I’m right back where I started,” she says. “It just so happened to be mother nature that stopped my kidney transplant from happening. The hardest part has been going back to [dialysis] when I thought it would be over. I just don’t feel normal.”
Goss says she immediately thought of her children, — ages 12, 17, and 18 — when she got the heartbreaking news and was sad that they wouldn’t get their “old” mother back.
“I felt like I failed them. Like I robbed them of something,” Goss tells PEOPLE. “My kids were like, ‘My mom’s finally gonna be able to be the way she used to be.’ I used to have really high energy and was able to take my kids out and go out and do things. I feel like I robbed my kids of so many things other kids get to do with their parents.”
Now, Goss is back on dialysis, and back on the transplant list. It’s unclear how long it will be before a match is found again.
The family has set up a GoFundMe page to help cover living and medical expenses.