“It’s harder as the donor because we are losing something our body didn’t need to lose,” Raisa, 29, said during an upcoming appearance on Harry Connick Jr.’s daytime talk show Harry, according to Just Jared.
The Grown-ish actress added that watching her friend get “up and at it immediately” while she still had to go through months of recovery first was difficult.
“I’m a very, very active person,” she said, explaining that it was hard when “my doctor said I couldn’t move for two months.”
“I couldn’t do anything active. All I could do was walk. That was very hard for me, and I have a dog,” she continued. “Every day the thing I look forward to is drinking my coffee, and walking, and I couldn’t do that. It was really, really hard.”
Gomez shocked fans in September of last year when she announced that, due to lupus complications, she’d received a kidney transplant from her best friend Raisa over the summer.
Explaining why she made the decision to give her friend a kidney, Raisa told Today’s Savannah Guthrie, “One day she came home and she was emotional. I hadn’t asked anything. I knew she hadn’t been feeling well.”
“She couldn’t open a water bottle one day. She chucked it and she started crying. And I said, ‘What’s wrong?’ and that’s when she told me. And she goes, ‘I don’t know what to do. The list is seven to ten years long.’ ” she continued.
“It just vomited out of me: I was like, ‘Of course I’ll get tested,’ ” she added.
“They’re like sisters. I love her a lot, too. She loves me a lot. She says I’m her mom,” she continued, before adding that following the surgery, the longtime friends became closer than ever.
“The love between them has really grown. Selena is a great girl, and she also has a big heart, as does Francia. I’m very proud of both of them,” Almendarez said. “Francia has a huge heart because not anyone would just let go of one of their organs to give it to someone else.”
And after her recovery period was finally over in late September, Raisa shared a video of herself on Instagram lifting weights as she told fans how “happy” she was to be able to return to her active lifestyle.
“Happy to be back,” she captioned the video, during which her scar from the surgery that saved her friend’s life was visibly present.
Raisa’s full interview on Harry airs on Monday.