Oakley’s Story

Tyler and Oakley Poston share so much more than a last name. Tyler literally gave his son life, twice.

When Oakley was in utero they knew something was wrong because he was not urinating. They did an emergency C-section, and he was born at 4 lbs. 9 oz. He went immediately to the ICU for testing, and they found out he had stage 5 kidney disease. The goal was to get Oakley to grow big enough to get him on the kidney transplant list.

After he grew strong enough to be released from the ICU, he was able to eat baby formula like any other baby. Around the age of 1, he had a G-tube inserted to allow his father to feed him every 90 minutes, up until he was able to eat on his own post-transplant. If they kept him gaining weight and stable, they could keep Oakley off of dialysis, which would have been very difficult for a toddler.

When Oakley hit 30 lbs., which he needed to be to get the surgery, Tyler went in to get his kidneys evaluated for gifting to Oakley.

“I always had in my mind that if I could give him my kidney, I would. After the evaluation they told me I wasn’t a match, and I was crushed,” said Tyler.

The next morning though, the hospital called and explained there was some confusion – Tyler was, indeed, a perfect match! They prepped for surgery and were introduced to Ronald McDonald House Charities of Kansas City.

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“He was doing labs three times a week, and we live an hour and a half away. It has been so convenient being this close. I’m forever grateful,” Tyler said.

Tyler’s parents, Kris and Ron, moved in with their son and Oakley to RMHC-KC as well since both boys would need to be taken care of post-transplant. Tyler went to the University of Kansas Medical Center to get his kidney removed, and it was transported to Children’s Mercy to be transplanted into Oakley.

“It was the hardest four days because we had never spent a day of his life apart, ever,” Tyler said.

The surgery went by the books, and both Tyler and Oakley were discharged to live at the Ronald McDonald House while they waited for his levels to get consistent and for doctors to be happy with his progress. In the meantime, RMHC-KC kept 3-year-old Oakley busy! The charity has been able to send them on trips to Legoland and the Kansas City Zoo, schedule play time in the basements, and create the opportunity for Oakley to ride a tricycle for the first time! He’s also exploring new tastes as he eats with his mouth now and is enjoying it.

Tyler and Oakley headed home to Horton in June of this year, and he was able to get back to a normal life for himself and his sweet, spunky little boy![/vc_column_text]