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Saturday, February 22, 2014

Waiting for a Kidney Transplant...Faith precedes the miracle

      
            It was March 2013 (three months since I found
out my kidneys had only 10% function; kidney function
for a healthy person is 60-100%). I had been praying for
a miracle which wasn't going to happen in the way I had
hoped. I had to come to grips with that. I felt my prayers
were not being heard. My daughter suggested that I pray
for the Spirit to guide me (validation #1). I agreed, and
that night was a turning point in this life changing journey.
Finally, the answers started coming one after the other.

        The next evening a friend of my husband's visited
unexpectedly and when he left, my husband told me
of the informative discussion they had. His wife previously
had a kidney transplant a few years ago and was doing
fantastic (validation #2). I told my husband that I was
happy for her, but I really did not want a kidney transplant.
I was adamant about it.

          The next day I received a call at lunch from my
husband telling me he bumped into another close friend.
She is a nurse who works at many schools. It had been
months since he had seen her last. I asked if he had
told her about the kidney situation..at that time he said
he had not. He called me again later that day, and said that 
he bumped into her again. He told her about my 10% kidney
function. She said she had a very strong feeling that I
needed to get a kidney transplant before the end of the
year (validation #3). When my husband mentioned that, I
knew in my heart that the Lord was answering my prayers...
I needed a kidney transplant. Up to that point I had thought
a kidney transplant was the closest thing to death...not the
answer to my prayers.

            The following day I got up and turned on the
television. I was so surprised to hear the word donor
coming from it. It intrigued me because I usually never
watched that station. The show was about three different
people waiting for a kidney transplant (validation #4).  
I was glued to the set. I felt it was another answer to
prayer...for me to learn about kidney disease and
transplants... and I did.

          My mind and heart were making a complete 180
degree turn-around. Then, the next day our friend, the
school nurse (mentioned above) stopped by our house
with flowers and dinner. We had a great discussion. She
helped educate me about kidney transplants and their
benefits. She shared with me some things in her life
which connected to what she was telling me about
kidney transplants. (validation #5) Consequently, she
felt she was being helped by our discussion as well.

           I thought my prayers were not being heard. 
However, I realized that they were indeed being heard; 
the answers were coming through other people to me, 
one right after another. There were five validations that
the Lord was letting me know His will for me to receive
a transplant.

           Now that I knew what He wanted for me, I
researched the Internet and talked with doctors. My
nephrologist (kidney doctor) could hardly believe it.
When she asked what happened, I pointed to the
heavens and said I finally found out what He wanted.
I have been at peace with my decision ever since.

The next phase of growing and understanding was
about to begin.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Kidney Disease...The Power of Prayer













          Looking back to January 2013 I could hardly
believe the words out of the doctor's mouth. “You have
stage five renal failure with 10% of your kidneys
functioning.” He said it was not “life-threatening,” but
that was not true. After researching it on the internet I
found that it was indeed life threatening, and if I did
not go on dialysis the disease would be fatal. Something
needed to be done immediately.

          I was sent to a kidney specialist. A true God-send
for me. She is one of the best in her field, and I was truly
blessed the day she came into my life. She did a lot of
tests from head to toe to rule out causes. She immediately
had me get an iron infusion and a Procrit shot to help do
what my kidneys could no longer do.

         During this time I prayed for a miracle and expected
one. I believed I had faith to have one, since I had
previously experienced major health scares. Maybe
I was praying for the wrong thing.

         My prayers for a miracle were ongoing. I had
Priesthood blessings which gave me much peace and
comfort. I had many people praying for me which filled
me with gratitude for such love, support, and being
alive.

          However, I did not feel my prayers were being
heard. That was one of the hardest times through this
experience. I had previously received fast answers to
my prayers that I was shocked when I felt I wasn't
receiving any answers. That went on for three months
with no answers. It felt dark, and I hated that void in
my life...not feeling that my Heavenly Father was right
there with me. During that time I had some depressed
days; Let's call them “pity party” days. Thank goodness
they were few and far between, but I learned and grew
through them all.

           One thing I discovered was that I needed to
mourn the loss of my kidneys like the death of a loved
one. I was going through the emotions without realizing
it, essentially experiencing the five stages of grief.

            I was lucky. I went through the denial, some
depression, and then acceptance. Most of the time, I
just wanted to know what Heavenly Father wanted me
to learn from this so that I could move on. However,
I quickly learned that my time was different than His,
things were on His timetable, he had numerous things
for me to experience. It was going to be an interesting
journey..,
       

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Kidney Transplant: A Journey of Hope


             










             It has been a long time (approximately 1 year) since I
have updated or written on my blog. The reason being, I found
out January 2013 that my total kidney function was at 10%;
normal is between 60-100%. When your kidney function goes
down to 15% or less you usually need dialysis to function on a
more normal level. My kidney function is currently at 7%, and
miraculously I am still not receiving dialysis. I consider it a
blessing.
              
             Most people know little about kidney disease...I was
one of those people. However I changed that! I researched and
educated myself, and am now in the process of preparing to
receive a kidney transplant in the near future.
               
               That's the good news! The bad news is knowing that
the majority of people do not know that high blood pressure,
diabetes, and Ibuprofen contribute greatly to the chances of
kidney (or renal) failure, that more than a 100,000 people are
on a waiting list for a deceased donor's kidney or that you only
need one kidney to function and live a normal life.
               
                I am one of the lucky ones with five living donors
(family and friends) offering me one of their kidneys so that
I can live. This is one of the most humbling and wonderful 
blessings that has come into my life. I will continue writing
on my blog about the high and lows of the journey and what
I have learned from this challenge in my life.
               
                 It is my hope that by writing about this experience, 
people everywhere will become well informed about this disease...
to help you, your family, friends and maybe even inspire some
changes in thinking about and considering organ donation that
saves lives.
              
                I invite you to come and join me in this journey of hope and enlightenment...