The major headline this morning is Selena Gomez’s major revelation: she had a kidney transplant. Her friend Francia Raisa was the donor. It happened earlier this summer. Apparently Selena’s fans have been wondering why she was “laying low” at the time and it’s because, well, she was having major surgery. Here’s the Instagram post with the explanation – it’s a 3 photo gallery that includes her scar:


I’m very aware some of my fans had noticed I was laying low for part of the summer and questioning why I wasn’t promoting my new music, which I was extremely proud of. 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. 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. Until then I want to publicly thank my family and incredible team of doctors for everything they have done for me prior to and post-surgery. And finally, there aren’t words to describe how I can possibly thank my beautiful friend Francia Raisa. She gave me the ultimate gift and sacrifice by donating her kidney to me. I am incredibly blessed. I love you so much sis. Lupus continues to be very misunderstood but progress is being made. For more information regarding Lupus please go to the Lupus Research Alliance website: -by grace through faith

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This is a big f-cking deal, because Selena’s a big name. And she kept this secret. And now it’s not a secret. But for me, there’s an added layer of connection here because my ma also had a kidney transplant 15 years ago. I know a little about this situation. My ma refused my kidney. She even refused to have me do the test to find out the compatibility. Ma was on the wait list for a kidney for years and the call came at 1am one night – and it was a perfect match. Not all kidney transplants are perfect matches and these days, with so much progress made in the field, it doesn’t affect success rates as much. But ma is profoundly superstitious. She talks about her “perfect match” all the time.

A new kidney doesn’t mean all clear though. A body can reject what it doesn’t recognise. Anti-rejection medication must be taken to counter that. My ma’s been on anti-rejection drugs ever since the transplant. The doses have gone down but she has to keep taking them and that will most likely be the case for Selena too, in addition to whatever medical maintenance she has for Lupus. Ma used to refer to her kidney as her “baby”, the most precious gift ever. And she is diligent about looking after her “baby”, this organ that keeps her alive that was never supposed to be hers. She said to me once that it’s a tremendous responsibility, that she sees it as a responsibility for two people, for herself and for the donor, to live for both of them. I can’t imagine Selena and Francia don’t have the same bond now. What a beautiful, beautiful act of friendship.

Here is Selena on set of her new Woody Allen movie today with co-star Timothee Chalemet.