Takin’ Care of Buisness

We are back in black, baby!!!  I have spent all weekend putting my tube to the test, and it’s working beautifully!!  Yaaay!  No more hemo!  😀  So, now, it’s just a matter of getting this chest catheter (aka Hickman line) removed.  I visited the dialysis clinic today, and they told me that we have to wait for my doctor to get back from vacation…NEXT TUESDAY.  Which means an entire week more with this thing… which means I also still can’t take a shower until then.  Ugh!  Oh, and for those who are curious, I dug up my bikini to take a pic of the catheter for you to see.  Please insert sunglasses now.

Built-in Vampire straws...nice.

Built-in Vampire straws…nice.

And no, I’m not trying to earn any beads with this lovely image.  😉  Under the bandaid is where they actually inserted the catheter, but they have it exiting a bit lower so that I can turn my head and not be chewing on the tubes.  I will post a pic of my PD tube at a later date.  I’m not so sure you’d want to see all my fresh scars from the surgery I just had.  LOL!

In the meantime, I’ve followed up with my test results to see if my peritonitis infection has cleared, and it’s completely gone!  Yay!!  If you remember, they had to put me on hold for the transplant until that was cleared.  Of course, my dialysis clinic forgot to send the results to the transplant team, so I had to remind them and now we’re just waiting for the transplant team to make me active on the waiting list again! 

I also had a discussion with my transplant coordinator.  She told me that she was noticing the many trips to the hospital I’ve had to make (since she has access to the hospital records) and feels I should start thinking of my Plan B and reconsider living donation.  There have been some amazing people who have come to me wanting to be tested so they can be donors, and every time someone does, it literally makes me cry to think of what you are offering.  I’m choking up just writing about it!!  I always turned people down because I strongly felt that this was my burden to carry and no one else should have to suffer for me.  I’m having to rethink this plan, though, due to the strong urging of my coordinator.  She said she thought I was having more complications than most and felt I was having to suffer more than I should be.  I had no idea!  I’ve never gone through this before, so I don’t know what is “normal”.  But she said that every time I get an infection or have to go to the hospital for another complication, I’m putting myself at risk, and the quicker I can get this kidney, the better.  Of course, I thought I would have gotten the call a LOT sooner than I have, but I won’t argue!  The quicker this is over, the better.  I was told that from start to finish, the minimum amount of time it can take from the moment someone is accepted on their phone conversation to the day of surgery can be about 3 months.  That’s pretty quick!

So, in light of that topic, I am going to give everyone the phone number for the coordinator in charge of donation.  It all starts with a phone screening, so if you’re calling her to donate, she will ask you questions and tell you right then if you might be a candidate or not.  I have no expectations, I’m just putting it out there in case you are interested or even if you just have questions.   She’s definitely the perfect person to ask… more so than me!

Kristi Camp – Living Donor Coordinator.  817-922-4647.

Benefits of donating a kidney:

– People who donate tend to live longer than those who do not!  (not sure why, but bonus!)

– A living donated kidney lasts longer than a cadaver kidney…sometimes YEARS longer.

– You know the history of where the kidney is coming from…not always so with a cadaver kidney.

– Health deteriorates the longer someone is on dialysis.

– You can reap from the glow of knowing you saved someone’s life!

– Amazing opportunity to bond with an amazing freckle-faced girl next door.  😀  hee… just kidding.  Not really.

As I said earlier, though, this is my Plan B.  I am remaining on the list and have no idea when I could get the call, so it’s very likely I could get a kidney from the list before anything ever happens with a donor.  I’m just learning to keep my options open now.


What I’m thankful for today:

1. My cousin LaDonna is in town visiting for the week.  Girls’ week!

2. My routine is getting back to normal… if this is as “normal” as it gets for now.

3. I’ve got the coolest emerald green glitter nail polish on my toes right now!  Every time I look at them, it makes me smile.  🙂

4.  Life is getting better.


6 responses

  1. Hello Berta. Funny you should mention the live donor thing. I’m wondering if you can listen to this podcast:
    [audio src="http://mpegmedia.abc.net.au/triplej/hack/daily/hack_mon_2013_4_8.mp3" /]

    I have a friend that contacted me through my blog/Facebook and really wanted to be tested. It was such an honourable offer and after I had spoken to her and understood why she wanted to do it, I graciously accepted her offer. As hard as that was to do. We find out at the end of the week if we are compatible. The reason the donor will live longer is because of the amount of testing they go through, they find out every aspect of their health. Live donors apparently are better as the kidney doesn’t have to sit on ice for an extended period.

    Take care Berts, your kidney friend from Oz. Maria x

    1. Wow! That’s GREAT news!! Good luck and let me know if you guys end up being a match! I think it’s funny how parallel some of our experiences have been… I’ll check out the podcast tonight. Thanks for sending it! 🙂

  2. The sparkle green nail polish on your toes matches your green bikini…total Berta!

    1. You know me too well. 😉

  3. I’m glad you’ve decided to try for a living donor. You’re so much more likely to have a better outcome. Yay! And if you have folks lining up willing to donate, wowsa! Good luck!!

    1. Thank you! We’ll see if it helps…gotta stay positive! And your turn will come too… I have faith! 🙂

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