Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Day 67

I don't even know where to start.. Today was another emotional roller coaster.

First a little background.. My Mom had a kidney transplant in 2002. She started rejecting  the kidney in 2009. All the anti-rejection meds made her very sick and it was around this time that I gained a lot of weight back. She has been on dialysis for a over a year now. She never got to the point she needed it pre-transplant in 2002.

The first go round (2002 transplant) she was put on the list and received a kidney in 2 days. I kid you not!

There are 5 of us kids, all of whom have offered to try to donate to her, but she won't agree to that. So she is back on the transplant list, but since this is a 2nd transplant, it is harder to get a kidney that matches up with her antibodies and the antibodies in her system from the previous transplant.

Mom is now on 2 different transplant lists. You have to agree to be put on the 2nd one, as it is riskier. The kidneys may be from an older person and may not last as long as one that comes from the primary list. If you get a call from the transplant team on the primary list, you aren't allowed to ask any questions really.. you either take the kidney or they give it to someone else. With the secondary list, they will tell  you a lot more about the person and you can weigh out the pros and cons. However once you get a call about the kidney you only have so many hours to get the kidney into your body. So you have to decide fast. If you choose not to take it they have to match someone else up just as quickly.

Mom said from day 1 she would take the first kidney they offered her regardless to which list it came from because dialysis is very, very, very hard on her.

A few months back.. I'm not sure of the exact date.. maybe 6 months.. she received a call saying they had a possible kidney for her. She told them immediately, yes, she would take it. We all made the 3 hour drive and waited. The testing of the antibodies and kidney function takes a long time. We were there a good 14 hours. They had Mom prepped for surgery when they come in and tell us the kidney matched up on every single thing but failed when they tested to see if they could get it pumping. Oh my goodness. You want to talk about heartbreak. We were devastated as was Mom.

Well, Mom's been really sick as I've mentioned on my other posts. She has no kidney function at all, is on dialysis, and it is really causing her a lot of problems. The most recent being possible congestive heart failure.  She had fluid around her heart and lungs which is gone now. She just needed extra dialysis, thankfully, and is on the mend but not out of the hospital.

The transplant team calls her today and tells her they have another possible kidney. She tells them she will take it. Her kidney doctor and cardiologist both clear her for surgery, and they have her ready to go. They were going to fly her to the transplant center. We had our hopes built up again, only for them to call back and say the transplant team decided the kidney wasn't transplantable and even if it had been, they wouldn't have operated on her until she has another cardio work up in 2 weeks to make 100% sure she is fine.

I am thankful she didn't get down there and then it work out this way, like last time.  I am also thankful they were concerned enough to want to wait. However I can't help but be disappointed. When you watch your Mom get sicker and sicker.. when she can barely sit up... it is hard to have normal emotions. I have cried all evening. She needed that kidney so bad. She did wonderful with the last one.. dialysis is so hard on her.. I could have my Mom back.. if she could only have a match.

Don't get me wrong. I would never wish for someone to pass away so that my Mom can have a kidney, but I pray that if someone has chose to be a donor and it is their time to go anyway, that they will be a match for my Mom. I've read the quote "Faith in God is Faith in HIS Timing". This is so true, but hard to swallow too.

I kept my calories within the limits, but I was so tempted not to. I had one slice of Pizza, but it was within my calorie range. I really could have ate at least 4 pieces I was so crazed with emotion. But I didn't and I am proud of that. Yeah, I caved and had a piece, but only one piece, and that is a victory for me.

I even walked a mile on the treadmill! That just blew me away. I actually got on there, when what I really wanted to do was get in bed and cry.

Tomorrow is a new day, filled with new hope. It will be a better day. I have faith!

This photo is of Mom and I on Mother's Day 2009. She was rejecting her kidney and they had her on TONS of anti-rejection meds. Look how swollen she was from them.  I had maybe put back on 20 lbs at this point during her illness. I guess I was in the high 240s.
This is Mom, Dad, Myself (on the right) and my brothers/sisters in October 2010. I had gained back EVERY pound at this point. But it got worse for me. Look at Mom though, she looked great! She was on dialysis, but it wasn't making her as sick at that point.
This was taken a couple weeks ago after dialysis. She was so weak. You can see the tape on the fistula in her arm.


  1. I am so sorry about your mom :(. It is so hard seeing someone you love suffer. I used to work in the transplant dept at a hospital here in Cleveland and I fell in love with all of our patients; the donors and the recipients. Your mom is beautiful and I am hoping a kidney comes her way very soon.

    You are doing awesome! You are not letting stress and emotions defeat you! Be proud!! I say this as I am kicking myself. I finally made it to 38lbs lost only to sit here and eat popcorn right now. It's also the only thing I've eaten today. Today was not a good day, lol.

    Keep up the great work!

    1. Goodness. I'd kill over if I hadn't ate anything but popcorn all day. I have to eat or I get very sick. I hope you made time to get some food in you.

      As far as eating popcorn goes.. at least you weren't eating potato chips, right?

      Thank you so much for your support and hopeful thinking.

      Have a great nite! Oh and WTG on the 38 lbs!!! You rock!

  2. I, too, am sorry to read about your mom and what she is going through. She looks like a woman who has a kind and gentle energy. With so many people (your family and the medical professionals) caring for her, you just know she will get, not just a new kidney, but the perfect one for her to ensure she lives for many more years.

    I have such respect for you making healthy choices during such an emotional time. It seems crazy how, when we most need to put our health first, it's usually the thing that is neglected. Yet here you are, making time and taking care of yourself and not talking yourself out of doing it.

    In the past two months, you have come so far and have put so many good habits in place that it almost seems like the time on the treadmill and eating well are helping you get through things.

    I wish for the best possible outcome for your mom and am sending positive vibes to you and your family.

    1. Wendy,

      She is a woman with kind and gentle energy. I've only ever met one other woman as caring as she is and that was her Mom. I am beyond blessed to have her as my Mom.

      I am hoping and praying that you are right and she does get the perfect kidney.

      You are right about neglecting our health when we need to be healthy the most. That is exactly what I did last time and I am going to fight tooth and nail not to do it again this time.

      Thank you so much for the positive vibes. I'll take all we can get.

      Hope you have a great nite!!