WILTON — Aaron LeBlanc and his family are excited — and nervous — that he is scheduled to receive a new kidney Jan. 7.

Aaron LeBlanc of Canaan became ill while visiting his grandparents in Wilton last December. He will be receiving a new kidney on Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020. File photo

Aaron, 21, is the son of Amy Elizabeth and Andy LeBlanc of Canaan. His grandparents are Mike and Amy Frances of Wilton.

Aaron was his grandparents last December when a medical crisis led to the discovery his kidneys were extremely small, atrophied and full of scarring.

Aaron’s doctor said there was no chance of Aaron’s kidneys recovering and dialysis treatments were begun. Months of appointments and tests followed to determine if Aaron were a candidate for a transplant. A donor had to be found. Now that phase is complete and the LeBlancs await the next steps.

“I think right now we’re just in a holding pattern,” his mother said. “Counting down to the surgery is more nerve-wracking than exciting for Andy and I, although Aaron is very excited. He’s ready to get back to his old self. It’s been a difficult year for all of us and we can’t wait to have it finished so we can move on to the next chapter.”

Before then, there are several things to be completed: The family’s dogs and cats must be up to date on their vaccinations. The LeBlanc’s basement must be disinfected and the entire downstairs, including the floor, repainted.

The family set up a GoFundMe page to cover unexpected expenses. More than $15,000 of the $20,000 goal has been raised so far, but donations have ceased over the past few months. Nothing has arisen so far, but weather conditions at this time of year could create additional expenses.

Aaron will have his last dialysis treatment Jan. 6. He is scheduled to admitted early on Jan 7. to Maine Medical Center in Portland for the transplant surgery.

His mother said Aaron will be hospitalized three days to a week. His parents are hoping to stay at the Ronald McDonald House during that time. His sister, Abby, will be there for the surgery.

“As soon as we know Aaron’s in recovery, she is leaving to stay with a close family friend for the day,” Amy Elizabeth said. “Aaron’s surgery just happens to be on Abby’s birthday, so we’re doing our best to make sure she gets her own celebration, so they are going on a mini adventure. Our nephew is staying at the house to keep the wood stove going and take care of the animals.”

Once Aaron is released from the hospital, there will be weeks of medical appointments.

“The follow-up schedule for kidney transplant is intensive and will involve a lot of travel back and forth from our home to Portland, mostly on weekdays,” Amy Elizabeth said.

“We have a couple of options for places to stay in case of bad weather, mostly with extended family members. We are hoping to keep ‘couch surfing’ to a minimum to limit Aaron’s exposure to flu or cold as his immune system will be compromised. We have set aside limited funds for a specific number of hotel stays in case traveling is too hard on Aaron.”

Amy Elizabeth said the LeBlancs were unofficially informed a potential donor had stepped forward privately, by a mutual friend who did not give specific names.

“We knew that several people had signed up to see if they might be donors but we didn’t know who they were as the entire process is confidential,” she said. “We were told ‘officially’ by the transplant team at an appointment.”

It has been a year since Aaron’s diagnosis. Now, the wait for a new kidney is almost over.

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