I’m 12 years post-kidney transplant, the borrowed kidney is fine, but scarred and striated. I’ve survived renal failure, heart failure, four types of heart issues [currently have three stents in heart and may need further surgery], two umbilical hernia surgeries, colon cancer diagnosis then misdiagnosis. I’ve had over 30 surgeries and procedures kidney, fistula, graft and dialysis port access related. I’ve survived seizure disorders, diabetes and weight gain. I’m fighting side effects of 14 different medications with side effects of high blood sugars, weight gain, rosacea. I’ve been fighting all kinds of doctors to get quality health care. I’ve survived depression, PTSD, blackouts, anti-gay discrimination. Discrimination from jobs, housing, retailers, restaurants. Some days nothing i’m doing seems to be working and nothing i’m working on is going right. Life isn’t easy. Life is frustrating and difficult. And guess what? I don’t have to ‘keep a happy face’. I don’t have to smile and take put-downs, humiliation and discord. From anyone. From family, from friends, from strangers.
Guess what else I’ve earned. My Bachelors degree and my Masters degree. I went through six years of school after high school. I struggled, I studied, I worked. I worked for a number of years, before and after my schooling. I’ve been dishwasher, head cook, telemarketing, college administrative assistant, assistant manager in retail, workers’ compensation adjuster. Guess what I’ve accomplished. I’ve written ten books, have a blog and website I update, even after all this has happened. Ten books in four genres. I’m creative, imaginative, loved. I work out for my health and my kidney. I’ll never be 20 and have a size 28 waist again. That’s ok. I’m 46 and have a 36 waist, and I have significant health issues. I think I look ok for everything that has happened to me.
Sometimes I wonder why I fight so hard to stay alive. Then again, I’ve fought, struggled, warred to stay alive. Still, I fight. I have.