What would you do for your special someone to celebrate fifty years of marriage? Maybe you’d buy them flowers, or take them out for a nice dinner? How about giving them one of your kidneys? As implausible as that may sound, it was a very real experience for Jan and Mike Maulsby of Clear Lake, Iowa.

    Mike Maulsby has had to endure dialysis treatments for the past year now and several of his relatives have been tested in efforts to find a match to replace one of his kidneys. Although his son, Grant Maulsby, was a match, doctors recommended that he not go through with the procedure to retain his own health.

    But there was another qualified candidate; Mike’s own dear wife Jan. After receiving the news that she was a match the procedure’s date was set, and on no better than the couple’s 50th anniversary. “Celebrating 50 years of marriage is a big deal in itself, but it’s the ultimate gift to be able to give something like this to your spouse,” explained Christina Maulsby, the pair’s daughter-in-law. Had Mike not received this transplant he would have had to wait another year for the procedure.

    The couple are both doing fine, with Mike’s new kidney functioning properly. Mike will have to stay in Minnesota for the next month to undergo more procedures at the Mayo Clinic.

    Next time you’re thinking of that perfect gift, you might have to think bigger. It’s hard to imagine a better way to convey your love than literally giving a piece of you away.