Jason Vs. The Kidney

The year was 1976. The month, December. The day, the 8th. So December 8, 1976. It was December 8, 1976. Anyway, our beloved Jason was brought into this world screaming, crying, and heavily tattooed. And healthy! He was healthy. Well, mostly. Soon after Jason’s birth, the doctors realized that he had only one kidney. But that’s cool, right? They say you only need one kidney to live. In theory, sure — but the doctors were like “Ooooh, yeah — that’s a problem… See, the other kidney isn’t functioning at 100%. And with time, that other kidney — we’ll call him ‘Lionel’ just for clarification’s sake — Lionel will slowly lose function until he eventually stops."

His parents were like “Oh heck!” But they decided to raise Jason like they would any normal child. (So brave!) They saw how happy little Jason and Lionel were together. They decided they wouldn’t worry their son too much about Lionel’s eventual betrayal against its host. And so he lived his merry life with Lionel by his side. Or, inside, I guess. Jason and Lionel. Lionel and Jason. For the first 20 years of their life, they were inseparable! A close source even says that Jason often gushed that Lionel was “the one.”

But Jason noticed a change in Lionel in his mid-twenties, when he began experiencing frequent headaches, super high blood pressure and growing horns but that might be a whole other issue. That’s when test results showed that Lionel was now only functioning at 35%. After that, there was some weird Dawson/Pacey tension between Jason and Lionel. And it would only get worse, much like James Van Der Beek's acting.

In the years to come, Lionel’s functioning ability dropped dramatically, while a defenseless Jason could do nothing but watch.

And then the year was 2014. The mon—Sorry, May 23, 2014. On May 23rd, Jason went in for swollen legs. He was told that Lionel was now functioning at less than 10%. TEN PERCENT! What the shit, Lionel?? So Jason had to get shunts put in and was put on dialysis. And one of his doctors was like, “Hey, if you, you know, wanna get rid of Lionel at all and replace him, we’ll totally do the surgery.” Jason thought for a moment about all he and Lionel had been through, about how this could hurt him. And about how hard it might be to find a new kidney. Or what if he found one and it was one of those creepy organs still possessed by its previous owner? As scary as it all seemed, Jason knew he didn’t really have any other choice. So he said, “Screw it. Let’s do this.”

And that’s where this GoFund page comes into play. While patiently awaiting the hopeful news that there will be a transplant match for him, Jason receives dialysis every day. EVERY. DAY. You know how hard it is to fit a doctor or dentist appointment into your schedule, like, once every six months? Well, Jason’s life is now flipped upside down and revolves around him going to dialysis every. single. day. And while everyone is grateful that that opportunity is there for him, it causes a financial struggle because it puts a limitation on his ability to work. On top of it, he doesn’t have any vacation time left. So not only is he out of work because of Lionel (DAMMIT, LIONEL!), he's also not taking home his normal paycheck. So now Jason is just taking it day-by-day. And while his love, his queen, the kick-ass Stephanie is doing all she can to support everyone, it just isn’t possible for them to make ends meet on just her salary and his reduced short-term earnings.

Now let's talk health insurance. Good ol' 'Merican health insurance. You see, his health insurance doesn't cover everything (SHOCK!) and his short-term disability doesn't cover any pre-existing conditions (SHOCK!), so a lot of the medical bills will fall on this fearless duo.

As hard as it is for someone as strong as Jason to ask for help, that’s what this page is here for. He needs help. And that’s why we’re here. To listen to him, to help where we can, and to let him know that it’s OKAY to ask for help. Because when it happens to one of us, we hope that our friends and family will be as receptive to our pleas as we will be for Jason.

Jason knows that someday, he’s gonna meet a new kidney that’s just right for him. And that doesn’t mean he doesn’t love Lionel, or that he doesn’t care about him, but Lionel just isn’t right for him. And Jason deserves to be happy. He deserves a kidney that is going to treat him with respect and kindness. A kidney that will be there for him when he needs it. And he needs our support until that happens. Let's give that to him!

We hope you’ll consider making a small contribution to this amazing guy to help him get through this. Rarely does such a sweet, generous soul who looks like such a bad-ass come along, but here Jason is. And here we want him to stay. So let’s help this asshole out.
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    • $20 
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    • $20 
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Jason Barber 
St. Petersburg, FL
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