It’s been almost two months since Selena Gomez revealed to fans that she underwent a kidney transplant over the summer as part of her continued fight with lupus. It was, of course, BFF Francia Raisa who generously donated her kidney.
Now, Selena and Francia are finally opening up about the trying experience. They recently appeared on The Today Show and the “Hands to Myself” singer revealed there were some complications following the procedure. “I started to attempt to fall asleep. And in the middle of that process I started hyperventilating and felt so much pain,” Selena said. “My teeth — I was grinding — I was freaking out. It was a six-hour surgery that they had to do on me and the normal kidney process is two hours. Apparently one of the arteries had flipped. I’m very grateful that there are people who know what to do in that situation.”
She also called the experience “really kind of life or death,” before admitting that she is feeling better than ever and her lupus has only a three to five percent chance of ever coming back. “It’s really hard to think about or even to swallow,” she added. “My energy and my life has been better.”
In an earlier interview, the longtime friends discussed the moments leading up to their surgeries. “I didn’t want to ask a single person in my life. And she volunteered and did it,” the singer explained.
Selena shared the news that she had surgery on Instagram. None of her fans had any idea that she’d undergone such a massive procedure, but they had noticed that she had been absent from social media. In a touching Instagram post, Selena opened up about why she had been MIA. “So I found out I needed to get a kidney transplant due to my Lupus and was recovering. It was what I needed to do for my overall health,” she wrote. “I honestly look forward to sharing with you soon my journey through these past several months as I have always wanted to do with you.” And Francia hasn’t been shy about showing off her surgical scars. The 29-year-old proudly flaunted the scar she got during the surgery in a stunning white pantsuit paired with a sheer shirt. Watch the video below to see the photos!
Selena also took the time to thank her pal. “And finally, there aren’t words to describe how I can possibly thank my beautiful friend Francia Raisa,” she said. “She gave me the ultimate gift and sacrifice by donating her kidney to me. I am incredibly blessed. I love you so much sis.”
The 25-year-old has been very open about her struggle with lupus, a chronic inflammatory disease that occurs when the body’s immune system attacks its own tissues and organs. In a 2015 interview, the brunette beauty revealed that she checked herself into a rehab facility to get treatment. “I think it was just very complicated because I didn’t understand and then that was something that I did want to keep private until my whole life suddenly wasn’t private,” she said. “So, it was my moment. I’m really honestly able to relate to people and I get it.” She continued, “It’s kind of one of those situations. You just have to take care of yourself.”