Many times when diagnosed with something such as Kidney Disease it seems that your life stops. There comes a time that you need to get back to life or you will lose the life that you have.Anthony E Reed
There is a song that says “there goes my life.” This song summed up how I felt when I started on the journey of dialysis. It seemed that my world had crashed but now I felt more settled and it was time to get back to life. Getting back to life was a little more difficult than expected but here is what I learned about getting back to life
1. Appreciate the small things in life. The quote that is said so often “Stop and smell the roses” was more than a quote for me. It became reality and something that I started to live by and still live by this today.
2. Life is short and it is filled with all kind of experiences. I had good days and bad days but I have experienced more good than bad.
3. You are not guaranteed tomorrow-Enjoy today to its fullest.
4. Go for adventure. It’s much better than sitting at home and doing nothing.
One thing I needed to do is to get back to work. The reason for this is work gave me a purpose to wake up everyday. When I started asking when I could go back to work my medical team was in agreement but all options were giving to me. One of these was claiming disability. Disability instead going back to work. One of the big draws to this was that I could receive more money with disability than I could working but then what would the consequences be for me not going back to work? After weighing my options I decide that my mental health was a more value than money. Now for some this may not be an option and I would encourage those to find something to keep busy such as getting involved in your community or volunteering for a project or visiting family whether that be in person or in these times perhaps a weekly phone or video call. I also recommend getting involved with organizations such as NKF, AAKP or your local dialysis center. Finding a purpose in your life can help you a great deal.
It was good to go back to work even though my schedule was a little crazy. I started out with 4 hours shift and then worked up to 8 hours shift. Also put myself on the list to change my shift at dialysis. I had started out with a mid morning spot but was able to change to third shift which meant my treatment started around 5:00-9:00pm by having this time it meant that Monday, Wednesday and Friday night was off limits to work or any other activity but I would have somewhat of a steady schedule. I worked in retail at the time and my schedule was mediocre at best so that was a positive about dialysis is it steady my schedule to a degree.
While it was great to get back to work there were other things to get back to. Hanging out with friends and going to events that did not interfere with my dialysis treatment. Yes, it was great to get back to life but the realization hit me. It was not the life that I was used to, in fact, it was a new chapter one that was unknown yet had many adventures along the way.
Tune in next week as what started out as a innocent fishing trip ended up with a one week stay in the hospital, and don’t forget to subscribe so you don’t miss any new and exciting content especially the new Kidney Trails Comic Series that is just right around the corner.