A mother is appealing for the best Christmas present she could ask for – a new kidney.
Carly Anderson, 36, is in desperate need of a transplant after her kidneys failed earlier this year.
She lives with her three daughters – Ellie, 14, six-year-old Jessica and Billie, four – and boyfriend Ryan Rice, 32, who cares for her full time.
Carly has suffered from ill health for years.
She was diagnosed with diabetes aged 13, and since then has suffered two heart attacks.
In February last year she was diagnosed with chronic artery disease and heart failure, and was found to have a blood clot which moved from her heart to her leg.
She had an angiogram, and said the treatment weakened her kidneys.
Then, this summer, she was bitten by a spider and given antibiotics which she said damaged her kidneys further.
Carly said: “My kidneys became unwell because of the dye they used for the heart, the dye that was used for the angiogram. It was weakening my kidneys further and further.
“I was admitted to Guy’s Hospital by London Bridge. I have been there for about a year and half.
“They kept saying Carly, your kidneys are failing. They said you won’t feel anything, they will just go.
“I didn’t think anything of that. I thought I will be alright, I am a fighter.
“They told me last year my kidneys were failing. This year I got bitten by a deadly spider in the summer. I thought it was the heat burning me. But it was a spider biting me.
“They gave me strong antibiotics which killed my kidneys off.
“In September, I went to the kidney clinic and they told me I needed a transplant.
“They told me my kidneys were dead – whatever medication you have had when that spider bit you killed your kidneys.
“They still didn’t know what spider it was. I presume it was a false widow or something like that.
“It was in September I found out I need a transplant.”
Carly, who lives in Eltham, south east London, said she was told to find a live donor.
She explained: “Then they would do the operation in three months. The next option would be to wait for someone to die.
“They said if you don’t get a kidney you will die. They haven’t given me any time span, just that if I don’t find one I won’t go.
“I believe that if I am doing an appeal I will find one. It would mean the absolute world to me. It would make my Christmas.
“I would love that person that comes forward to give me the kidney.
“It would be the best present I could possibly ever have, apart from my children.
“My children are just in bits. My eldest daughter cries all the time. They think I am going to die.
“My youngest ones don’t really understand about it very much. But my eldest daughter, she is constantly crying.
“I try and assure her that I am okay. She is in bits, and so is my boyfriend.
“They see me cry because it hits home to me again. All I am doing is crying, because it’s so sad.
“It would mean the world to me. It would be the best Christmas present anyone could give me, for me to be well again.”