In a teaser video of an exclusive interview with TODAY’s Savannah Gunthrie, to be aired on Oct. 30, a tearful Selena Gomez, 25, spoke candidly about her medical ordeal and how her friend Francia Raísa, 29, saved her life. Raísa was right beside her through the interview.
“My kidneys were just done. That was it,” said the “Bad Liar” singer. “I didn’t want to ask a single person in my life and that was the day, when I came home, I found out she volunteered and did it.”
“You feel that Francia saved your life,” asked the TODAY host.
“Because she did. That’s it,” Gomez responded. “I guess I got to the point where it was really, kind of, life or death.”
— TODAY (@TODAYshow) October 27, 2017
The autoimmune disease lupus, which the “Wolves” singer had been battling for the past two years, had damaged her kidneys to the extent that a transplant was her only option to life. Death was staring her in the face and had it not been for Raísa, the 25-year-old would have met a premature end.
It was in September that Gomez first made the news of her kidney transplant public on Instagram with a picture of herself and her donor friend Raísa holding hands on their side-by-side hospital beds.
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: www.lupusresearch.org/ -by grace through faith
Gomez and the “Dear White People” star Raísa first met back in 2007 at a Disney and Freeform (formerly ABC Family) charity event involving a visit to a children’s hospital.
“Six years ago Disney and ABC Family had the stars of their shows go to the Children’s Hospital. Selena and I were in the same group and we just clicked,” Raísa had told LATINA in November 2013.