DURHAM (WTVD) --Jason Diacumski sits inside a bed at Duke University Hospital counting down the hours until he can return home and reunite with his wife, Nichole. She just donated her kidney to Jason, her husband of 15 years.
The chance of a couple being a perfect match is less than one percent.
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The surgery took place Monday and it was an emotional experience. Nichole was on edge as she was about to go under and donate her organ.
"My wife is braver than me," Jason said.
Jason has been battling a kidney disease, and doctors told him he could wait up to seven years on the donor registry. Remarkably, the 35 year old's wife was a perfect match.
"I lost it when she said 'goodbye' to me [on Monday before surgery]. I tried to hold strong, but I was nervous. It is a serious surgery," said Jason.
After hours of surgery, the transplant took.
"It still feels surreal. It's amazing. I just feel really good and I'm so happy that we were able to do this," he said.
Jason says he feeling better now than he has in years, but he's not out of the woods yet. On Wednesday, he received a blood transfusion.
He hopes to be released from the hospital by the end of the week and join his wife at home, where she is recovering.
Jason says he'll return as a better man and husband.
"I literally got a second chance at life and I am going to run with it," said Jason. "I am going to try to be the best husband I can and just try to remember when times get tough -- don't wanna take the trash out, don't want to do chores -- she gave me life. I really honor her for doing that."
Nichole and Jason are familiar with Duke University Hospital. Both work at the facility as nurses. Nichole is expected to go back to work in about a month and will be on light duty. Doctors told Jason he might be able to return in June.
He said, "I have a new found respect for all our patients."
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