Saturday, April 28, 2012

I have heard many people say that when some people are sick, they milk it for all its worth.  I agree.  Many people do this.  I, being the lazy sort of person that I am, had always thought that if I got sick, heck yes I would be using that as an excuse for anything and everything that I could.

But then I actually got sick.  In the summer of 2010, my friend Emily had to stand by and just wait for me to pretty much crawl down the 20 or so steps so that she could take me to the emergency room.  She couldn't lift me or really help in any way.  It was scary for me and I'm sure it was scary for her.  During that week-long hospital stay, I couldn't get out of the bed without help.  Towards the end of the stay, a physical therapist came to work with me because I had lost all of the strength in my legs.  We walked around the floor, and I handled that ok.  Then she asked me if there were any stairs at my house, and when I told her there were about 20, she said I had to be able to go up at least 10 without taking a break before she would let me go home.  So we went to practice going upstairs.  I got up 2 before I had to stop.  And that wasn't to take a break.  That was for the day.  I was ready for a nap!  So luckily my Mom said that she would take me to her house to stay for a week so that I could recover easier, because she only has about 10 steps, and they are small ones.

I knew before this incident that if I don't take care of myself I could loose the use of my legs, but that trip to the hospital was a real eye opener for me as to how quickly it can sneak up on you!  The first time that I got sick and had to start dialysis, I let my Mom baby me quite a bit.  This is mostly because I was totally lost in a sea of medical jargon and dialysis made me so tired and weak that all I wanted to do was rest and rest and when I got done with that, rest some more.  I am so grateful to her that she just let me rest.  For the first 9 months at least.  That gave my body time to heal - as much as it could, anyway - and get used to being on dialysis.  Then I was feeling stronger and I was actually able to get a part-time job and move out on my own.  The second time I got sick and had to start dialysis, I was much more weak and so it again went very hard on me.  I am lucky to have a wonderful husband who also just let me rest.  He would bring me whatever I needed and hang out with me when I wanted it and go away when I didn't want it.  So he got to baby me too.  This time I only needed it for about 6 months though.  My body got used to it easier this time.

So yes, I was very well taken care of during my times of extreme weakness.  But I never wanted to take a wheelchair home to use, that thought scared me and always will.  And even though I still get sick after my treatments, it is easier to fight through those times now.  And so that is what I do.  Because I don't want to be sitting at home all the time, being sick, being tired.  I make sure to listen to my body so that I know when I've pushed it too far.  That is very important for everyone to do.  If you don't know your body's signals, you won't know when to stop and give it a break.  I am getting bored around the house lately, so I have decided to try and go to school.  I don't like feeling as if all I'm doing is just waiting around for a kidney transplant and then I'll start my life again.  I want take a advantage of life, not my illness.

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