r When 26-year-old Cameron Mims took his first breath, the kidney transplant candidate was already a fighter and survivor. Because of a torn amniotic fluid sac, Cameron had to endure several in utero surgical procedures to make his appearance into the world.
Those first operations where groundbreaking procedures at the University of Utah hospital. “We found out that he was a boy and would be lucky if he would survive to birth,” said his mother Carrie Bradley.
When Cameron was born, the problems he faced were bigger than doctors originally thought. It has been an uphill battle Carrie and Cameron have taken day by day.
During the last 26 years, Cameron’s had numerous surgeries and fought lymphoma. A few weeks ago, Cameron had his 83rd surgical procedure.
Cameron had his first kidney transplant when he was just 7. Eleven years later, he developed lymphoma as a side-effect of the anti-rejection medications he took. After fighting off cancer, his kidney went downhill. Though the cancer has not returned, he has been on dialysis now for almost 7 years and is in need of a kidney transplant.
Carrie said through it all Cameron has been an amazing kid. “He’s never asked ‘Why me?'” While his friends have grown up and gotten jobs and gotten married, Cameron has been restricted to going to dialysis 4 days a week for 4 hours at a time and trying to jump through the hoops of getting on the transplant list.
Cameron said through his challenges he relies on his faith in God. “Really he’s the only way right now that I’m getting through it all. Otherwise, it would bury me. And just staying positive through it helps too. I figure if I’m just negative all the time, it just makes things harder in life,” he said.
Carrie said Cameron has a “beautiful heart and a beautiful spirit.” Throughout all his challenges he still focuses on others. As a child, Cameron would give gifts he was given when going through surgeries or treatments to other children in the hospital.
As a single mom, Carrie has struggled to work, care for Cameron’s needs and pay for all the medical expenses. “We have been blessed to have people help us or we would never have made it,” she said.
Recently, Carrie’s friends and co-workers have set up a Go Fund Me account to help pay for a kidney transplant and Cameron’s other medical needs. Visit Carrie and Cameron’s fund on Facebook or Fundraiser for Cameron Mims on GoFundMe.
Carrie said, “When you need a transplant, you have to show them you are in a stable environment where you are not going to lose the roof over their head, can get to the appointments, and get medication.” Carrie will also need to stay home with him for the first couple of months. They are working to get things financially in order so they can qualify.
“My biggest hope for the new year is to get everything finally done to see the transplant team and start the transplant process,” said Cameron.