I feel like all I do is complain, but then people tell me if they were going through what I am, they don’t know if they could do it. Let me tell you, it surprises you how much you can actually take until you have no choice.
For those that don’t know, my troubles started Dec 23rd, 2008. I was staying with Mom because my apartment had a mold issue. It turned out to be a good thing. On that morning, I woke up to find I couldn’t get out of bed. I had no pain, no shortness of breath, no tingling in the arms, no pain in the jaw or any of the other “normal” symptoms of a heart attack, yet that’s exactly what was happening.
If it weren’t for Mom calling an ambulance to take me to the hospital, I might not be typing this right now.
After 5 stents, and a few days recovery, I was sent home. While there, however, I was told my kidneys were failing. If they didn’t improve, I would need dialysis.
So, I found a nephrologist, otherwise known as a kidney or renal doctor. So many names for one idiot. My “numbers” were improving with every visit, my rosy cheeks returned (I had been grey, according to family and friends) and all seemed to be going well, until said idiot decided I needed a water pill. If any doctor ever prescribes you a water pill, punch them firmly in the throat, kick them in the balls or push them down the nearest flight of stairs.
I say this because within 2 weeks, my kidneys went from “marked improvement” to “no longer functioning” and, he had the balls to tell me it was the water pill he put me on that did it.
So, here it is 3 1/2 years later, I am on dialysis, which is slowly (and sometimes not so slowly) killing me. Between the unmerciful cramping and passing out on occasion, it hasn’t been fun. Of course, it beats the alternative. No dialysis, dead in a month.
Three times in my first facility, they almost killed me. Once they actually succeeded and needed to revive me. My blood pressure had dropped to 40 over 0. No, that’s not a typo, it’s ZERO. It took them 45 minutes to revive me to the point where I was conscious. They didn’t tell what happened until the next week, when I complained about being light headed ever since that day. Other patients kept asking me how I was. None of the staff asked me even once.
So, I transferred to where I am now, which is in Jamaica, Queens. They were better right off the bat. They were more concerned with the patient than their precious machines, unlike the first facility. I’ve had a few rough nights on dialysis since heading there, but all in all, it has been much better.
Then, last night happened. My blood pressure dropped to 80 over 50. I passed out cold. They weren’t pulling too much fluid, but I found out they had the blood flow set too high. A simple miscalculation while setting up the machine and I was a cramping, sweating, shaking mass of jelly. This happened after they took me off the machine, but luckily before they pulled the needles, so they could give me saline to bring me back.
As if that weren’t bad enough, when I got home I was so tired, I didn’t bother to pull the bandages off. I just fell asleep on the couch. I awoke a half hour later in a pool of blood. My puncture wounds from the night were bleeding profusely. I no longer have the “penguin” throw that was on the couch, the t-shirt or the pants I was wearing. I had to toss them. They were all stuck together. Luckily, I didn’t leak through to the couch. That’s a small miracle in itself. I have a few throws, but that one had sentimental value. I’m using another sentimental throw right now…
Being weak and dizzy to begin with, then having all this blood everywhere I looked, I nearly passed out all over again. After getting the bleeding to stop and throwing a bloody bag out the door (if I had nosy neighbors, I’m sure the police would have knocked on my door), I passed out on the couch again. I awoke this morning to more cleaning. the bathroom was bad. I just noticed my bathroom rug still has blood on it. I have another one….
So, the point of this whole story is to illustrate how much I need a kidney donor. Please, if you know someone, have them contact me. You ave no idea how much it would be appreciated. Next time, I might not wake up in time.