BENEFITING: National Kidney Foundation, Inc.
EVENT: San Francisco Marathon 2015
EVENT DATE: Jul 26, 2015
National Kidney Foundation serving Northern CA and the Pacific Northwest wrote -
The National Kidney Foundation is the leading organization in the U.S. dedicated to the awareness, prevention and treatment of kidney disease for hundreds of thousands of healthcare professionals, millions of patients and their families, and tens of millions of Americans at risk. 26 million Americans have kidney disease and nine-tenths of them do not know it; 1 in 3 are at risk for developing it. Join Team Kidney in taking the fight to the finish line! Contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
The National Kidney Foundation has helped my family and friends in the most dramatic way. It started circa 2004. My mother was informing us how she noticed that her feet were swelling up and how she wasn't able to walk properly from the pain. We waited to see if the swelling would recede. Unfortunately it did not. We took her to see a medical professional who diagnosed her with gout. After trying to change up her diet to incorporate more water and a healthier diet the swelling went down but she was still lathargic. Frustrated in the situation my family decided that it was best to consult a doctor for more information. After several bottles of blood drawn for testing the tests came back showing that her kidneys were not operating to their peak performance. It came down to it, we needed to choose which diaylsis to go with hemodialysis or peritoneal dialysis. My mother wasn't up for the idea of getting a catheter, but then again who would be? So she was thinking of going with hemodialysis the only caveat was that her veins were so small the nurses had a very hard time "sticking" her. Ultimately she had a temporary catheter placed near her neck. After some time doing hemo dialysis we decided that driving back and forth to the hospital was getting a bit tedious especially when we didn't have someone readily available to drive her to and from. The only option (other than getting a donor) was peritoneal dialysis or P.D. We started to do P.D. at home and everything started off wonderful. With all the supplies needed for P.D. we almosted needed to rent out a storage unit! After the years we started to have a set routine down from consistently washing anything and everything around the P.D. machine to ocasionally waking up around 2 AM from the P.D. machine. Unfortunately with the ease of dialysis around the house my mother started to retain some of the water from the solution. We tried our best to find the right amount to pull out but if we pulled too much she would cramp up and too little she would be super bloated. It took heavy consideration of what to do next, continue P.D. and see her weight go up or switch back to hemodialysis. This became a family decision since it involved everyone to help out. We went with hemo. A few treatments and mother started to look like herself again. As reluctant she was to go back to hemodialysis my mother was getting better, lethargic on treament days but lively on her off days. Over one weekend my mother became very sick, coughing constantly at night sometimes throughout the day and she would start vomiting. We did the only thing that came to mind, we took her to the emergency room. She somehow obtained ecoli. Her immune system was weak already and this didn't make it any better. She was sent to the ICU to be monitored intensively. My eldest brother drove from Philly and stayed by her side throughout most the ordeal. The rest of the family took turns doing the same, just to make sure everything was going smoothly. When we thought that she was on the road to recovery things turned for the worst. Her heart gave out for 30 seconds but for the family seemed like an eternity. All we could do was pray that she fight back. She needed a breathing tube inserted into her lungs to breathe. As a true trooper she came back. She was in the ICU for roughly a month. Once she was able to breathe and eat on her own she was sent to healthsouth rehabilitation center to relearn how to walk and get her muscles back. It only took her a few short weeks to get up and become mobile again. I started considering joining the military but I couldn't leave my parents in this type of situation. I prolonged my sign up until I knew my my mother was doing better. May of 2012 my mother received her transplant from a donor. We went through emotional ups, downs, many viles of blood, and bottles of medication but ultimately received the best blessing of all, a kidney.
We have family member alive today from a live donor. She is living a normal life with little to no complications. She had to endure the struggles of hemodialysis during the same time my mother did.
We cannot give enough thanks to the men and women who educated us, treated, and spent countless hours helping us. This is the only way I see that I can give back.