Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The Squad

I was at the dialysis unit yesterday for my weekly check-up and flush and just before I was called in, the paramedic squad was walking through the door. There was no rush, just a calm pace as the 4 men entered with tackle boxes of supplies and a stretcher, as a nurse held the door open for them.

It was hard to tell what exactly was going on as the Hemo and Peritoneal (PD) areas are separated and they were headed into the Hemo side as I entered the PD area. There was no commotion or hurried activity, just the presence of a paramedic squad.

When I asked my nurse if that happens a lot, she just looked at me and gracefully smiled and said, "yeah, we see them every once in a while". It was an interesting response, as the nurse who helps me is very nice and sincere and gives the impression that she has been doing this for a while. I really couldn't tell if it was a rare or frequent occasion, but it did give me the feeling, that they are not called unless it is absolutely necessary.

It brought home the feeling of how lucky I am. Sure I may be tired a lot, and low on energy, but I have a lot of things on my side. I am young, other than having a tube hanging out of me and a little high blood pressure - I don't have significant health problems. As a matter of fact, Torre was just saying the other day, there is an end in sight. I will be on my daily routine of 4 exchanges a day and having energy within a matter of a week and the transplant will be here before we know it.

I consider myself lucky because I have and end somewhere out there. I may not have an exact date, but I do have somewhat of a timeline. Torre and I talk a lot about what we are going through and are constantly overwhelmed with prayers and the nice things that people have helped out with.

Thank you to everyone who has helped us in one way or another and thank you very much for the continued prayers and support, they are very much appreciated!!

Saturday, March 27, 2010


I think one of the most amazing things in the world is the ability to adapt. I am still adjusting to some normal everyday things but at least I can now put on my socks and shoes without pain!! I have definitely learned more patience with myself and others. Although convincing others to have a little patience is more of a challenge than to convince myself that patience is needed.

For example - taking a shower. The not so fun part of having my port put in was the 2 week period of not showering during the healing process, and washing in a sink is just not the same as a shower - I think that goes without saying. It's a simple thing to shower, just turn on the shower and get in right. Well things have changed for me for such a simple task. Rather than just take a quick shower, it takes me currently about 30 minutes just to get ready to shower - I actually have to "wash" before I shower so I can get all the supplies ready for when I get out of the shower.

I am becoming more proficient, but still need to make adjustments. I know with time I will get even better so I will rely on patience and practice!!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

A Forgotten Anniversary

So 10 years ago yesterday, March 6, 2000, I received a call from the Ohio State University Medical Center. It was a call that changed my life. Yesterday came and went and it was in the middle of the night last night that I even remembered it. Yesterday was my 10 year anniversary of my kidney transplant.

I am not sure what to think about the day, the fact that the day changed my life, or a reminder of what I am currently going through. With the dialysis process starting, it is easy to think of all that I have recently been through and all the stuff that will be taking place, after all I am reminded every time I stand up and sit down.

The day is also a reminder of all the things that I have been able to do the last 10 years. I have been able to be employed, and enjoy my relationship with my wife. Most enjoyable would be the birth of my daughter Marin and son Tucker. We have been able to travel a little and experience things as a family that some people without health concerns are not able to do, I guess yesterday is a great reminder of how truly lucky of a person I am!!

Since I have started this journey and the blogging, I have had a lot of people tell me how they are impressed with my outlook on the situation. The truth is I just take it one day at a time and do what I have to do. After all, I did not choose to have this happen to me, so I make the best of what I have and control what I can control.

I want to thank everyone for the prayers and well wishes, they do mean a lot. I go Tuesday to have my catheter flushed and Wednesday have some final tests done before the dialysis begins, I am actually looking forward to the dialysis to have more energy!!

Happy Anniversary "Sidney the kidney"!!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Under the knife

Well, today I get the PD catheter placed in my abdomen. Although I am not nervous about the minor day surgery, I am a little apprehensive about the tube that I will have hanging out of me. It will just take some getting used to.

It was funny, I had lunch about a week ago with my mentor and told him what was going on. I was explaining the process and what I would and would not be able to do (go in hot tubs, oceans, swim in dirty pools etc). When I got we were talking about the things I would not be able to do, he looked at me and chuckled. I asked him what he was chuckling about and he asked me... "When was the last time you did any of those things?" It was funny because I cannot remember the last time I had done any of those things.

The hardest part I think I will have is getting used to the tube that will hang out of me for the exchanges. The only other difficulties I can for see is the limit in lifting things (nothing over 40 lbs.) and it will be a challenge when the kids want to climb on me...

I am looking at it as the next step and a little adjusting and all will be fine!!