At this point, Hudson said he was worn out.
"I took myself off the transplant list. I didn't tell my parents - I didn't tell anyone that I did it," he said. "And then the people at the hospital called me and said your friends are all coming in to be tested. Dozens and dozens of people did that. They never told me they were going to do it."
Friend Nick Richards, a fellow UC student who lives in the Washington, D.C., area, was a perfect match. Hudson still was reluctant.
"I made him talk to his grandmother and his mother. I made the doctors give him a psychological test - they do that anyway. He's a scientist and he's a baseball coach and he's outdoorsy and I kept saying, 'Are you sure you want to do this?' "
The surgery took place Dec. 2, 2008, and this time things went perfectly. Richards was out of the hospital in three days. Hudson was released five days after that.
Of course, a perfect transplant will work only so long in someone with an incurable disease. Gonin also is treating Hudson with a type of chemotherapy and an unusual plasma therapy.
"My disease is still there," Hudson said. "It just keeps attacking me."
Although he has an undergraduate degree in philosophy and religion and a master's degree in human resources, Hudson cannot work.
"I consider myself healthy right now," he said. Of course, health is a relative thing.
"Last year, I had seven surgeries, so I'm not that healthy," he noted. "In the kidney sense, I am better off, as in I don't feel like I'm going to die tomorrow. But my bones are destroyed because of the steroids I take. My doctors already talk about knee replacements and hip replacements.
"They have said if you live to be 40 or 50, you can expect to have cancer because of the hardcore meds you took."
Hudson is both a realist and an optimist, as it turns out.
"All this sounds dark, but if you hang around me, you realize none of this is ever brought up. None of this is ever shown. I don't dwell on it."
His girlfriend, Misty Peal, who works for the West Virginia Education Association, encouraged him to get involved with the Kidney Foundation, and Hudson said he now does want to be an advocate and to volunteer. Saturdays often find him at Laidley Field in Charleston, helping his grandfather, longtime announcer John Barker, during a sporting event.
He does want to get married some day and have children, but he considers with caution what his health future holds.
His doctor recently noted they should be prepared for what inevitably is going to happen to his now relatively healthy kidney.
"We know it's going to come back. We don't know when it's going to come back," he said. "It's scary to think about the future, but I want to plan a future."
Contact writer Monica Orosz at mon...@dailymail.com or 304-348-4830.
FYI: The National Kidney Foundation has scheduled a fundraising walk for 10 a.m. Saturday starting at the state Capitol. Walk options are 1 mile and 5K. For information, visit donate.kidney.org and search the link to walks by state.