When life knocks you down, calmly get back up, smile, and say. "You hit like a bitch."


My new kidney function

I have been going for weekly tests every Thursday now, and I am happy to report my shiny new kidney is working beautifully. My creatinine clearance is 92 at present, my filtration rate is 67. My potassium is normal and my phosphates are low. Who would have thought that low phosphates could make me so happy? I am eating phosphate rich foods every single day, but my phosphates remain low. It’s astounding, really it is. I’m not on any kind of special diet whatsoever. My Dr just told me to have a normal well balanced diet. Now that for me includes Avocado on a daily basis. I drink coffee, eat chocolate, bananas, potatoes, whatever I can think of, I eat. Without feeling like I’ve just done myself an injury. It truly is such an amazing feeling. I keep waiting for  the novelty to wear off, but it just doesn’t. I’m certainly not complaining about that, lemme tell ya!

It’s been up and down with my anti-rejection drugs, but I was told that was perfectly normal. My one drug gets adjusted both up and down depending on how I respond to it. Currently I’m on a lesser dosage, so I’m so happy about that. The cortisone has been tapered off every 2 weeks or so, also depending on how my loods look. I’m currently on 12.5mg daily, but I started on 60mg daily. that was pretty rough!

When I got home everyone asked how I felt being home. Was I just so happy to be with my Husband and boys? It must be so good to be back in my environmen. How does it feel to not dialyse every single day? I must feel so happy and pleased? YES! Off course I felt all of that. I love being home, I’m such a home body, I love being here for Pete and the boys. And not dialysing everyday? I don’t even have to tell anyone what a relief THAT is!

But in all honesty? The overriding feeling I had when I came home? H-U-N-G-R-Y!!!!!!!!!!!!!! All I did for the first 2 weeks at home was EAT!! I ate everything that wasn’t nailed down. Pete thought that was just the funniest thing he ever did see! I think he got worried at ne stage. He would see me eating AGAIN and say “Honey? Eating again? Aren’t you still from lunch?” HA! lunch was at least 45mins ago, I’m starving!!!!!

That’s how it would go for 2 weeks, then I decided ok, enough of this eating Monster stuff. And it was pretty difficlt in the beginning, but luckily the Dr lowered my Cortisone dosage every 2 weeks, so it got easier to eat less. But I really enjoyed it, eating whatever I wanted was great.

Cortisone is pretty hectic stuff. I would shake like a criminal in police custody, had hectic moonface, and mood swings. Wow. I’m so glad to be over most of those side effects now. I’m not a Cortisone fan, I don’t know anyone who is. I will be on a low dosage of Cortisone for he rest of my life. But I really don’t mind, it’s one of 3 anti-rejection drugs I happily take. My Sister’s kidney is such a precious gift, I will do whatever I need to keep it safe. I don’t want her to be without a kidney for no reason.

She said to me just before the Transplant that if anything happens and the kidney doesn’t take, at least we tried. Gosh, she really is amazing. I would have been devastated for both of us if it didn’t take. Thank God it was hugely successful. And we have both recovered really well. I’m still so proud of my Sister.

i can n ow look forward to some cool holidays with the family and not wondering how we will fit that big ass dialysis machine and all the glucose solution in the car. That was a nightmare. Best of all, no rushing back at a certain time to dialyse! That’s just awesome!

“If you think sunshine brings you happiness, then you haven’t danced in the rain.” -Unknown



Test Results.

So I got my test results today. My phosphates are too high and my potassuim is too high. I’ve been very bad, I’ve eaten way too many crisps. I love love love crisps. But my love affair with those deliciously salty,  mesmerising, golden potato, wafer thin yumminess, has now come to an end. It’s just not worth it. I will miss the loss of my vice. This is the biggest downfall of renal failure. Apart from the obvious of having no kidney funtion. I can’t eat the food I love. Like seafood, a total no no. I do cheat a bit. And when we go to Cape Town I am SO eating seafood. So for the next month I will be good, I will stick to my boring-ass diet and eat only what is prescribed.Then I will unleash myself on Cape Town. So beware Capetonians, I am coming with an appetite!

My heamoglobin is also too high. It’s on 15 at the moment, it should be no more than 12. So I have to stop my EPO injections, I’m on the lowest dosage already. I feel that’s a really good sign. It’s always good when you don’t need a particular medication anymore.

On the plus side, my Urea has come down a lot. I have been eating way more protein and that has helped the urea levels.  My body was breaking down muscle tissue because I’m not a big meat eater. I was vegetarian only because I wasn’t a fan of meat, I did eat meat once in a while, but now I have to practically live on meat. Because plant proteins are high in phosphates, that is off my diet completely. I do miss those foods, I never felt overly full on plant proteins, whereas meat is very heavy. It took me a few months to get used to meat. But I’m good now, and if I really don’t feel like eating meat, I have  a protein shake I can drink. But it’s so disgusting tasting, I sprinkle it on my yoghurt, it somehow masks the awful taste.

I really can’t wait for all these side effects and the daily living with dialysis to end. I know I still have a way to go, but I need to have something to look forward to. I look forward to a time where I can just live, and not think about diet, medication or tests.

“Illness is the night side of life, a more onerous citizenship. Everyone who is born holds dual citizenship, in the kingdom of the well and in the kingdom of the sick. Although we all prefer to use the good passport, sooner or later each of us is obliged, at least for a spell, to identify ourselves as citizens of that other place.” 
― Susan Sontag