Hyland, 21, has quietly been battling kidney dysplasia her entire life. On April 13, 2012, she underwent a kidney transplant.
Her dad gave her the kidney and Hyland told the magazine, “You know that family is always going to be there for you – no matter what. My dad gave me a freakin’ kidney!”
“It was just amazing, and it really opened my eyes to see who’s there for me and who’s not,” says the actress.
Her real-life dad may be a hero, but Hyland says her “Modern Family” is pretty damn close to being real family.
“But it’s also the families that you create outside of your family. And you really find out what kind of people you’re friends with.”
Hyland says her boyfriend has been amazing in helping her recover.
“He helps me with my medication and takes me to doctor appointments and all the stuff that I need to do to take care of myself,” says Hyland, “Any other 21-year-old guy would not be there, I guarantee it. I am one of the luckiest people in the world to have him be there for me.”
Aside from her awesome boyfriend, Hyland says she’s most thankful for…”I have a second chance at life – not a lot of people get that.”
Check out Sarah Hyland's full story in Seventeen on newsstands May 22.