KIDNEY FAILURE - A PERSONAL JOURNAL

[Peter Langley]

The Second Week Comes To A Close

Friday, we went shopping, and I handled it well. I got some things at a gourmet shop to begin learning to cook from the Jacques Torres dessert cookbook, a strange habit for a diabetic, but I love to cook - even if I cannot eat what I cook in the way of desserts. I rested while my wife made a few runs to other stores, and took a nap on the ride home. The headaches are getting more and more manageable, but are not completely gone.

[Lynne] Saturday, we went to a crafts show and an art show, and I think I overdid it a little bit. I again slept on the way home, and was fine. That night, we watched the Gators beat Kentucky. Our children were at the game in Lexington. The headaches were again present, but manageable. My blood sugars are all over the map - not dangerously high, but I have had a couple of morning readings of under 60. I will mention this to my doctors at clinic tomorrow morning. I may have to make some more adjustments. Taking the medication which elevates the blood sugar only in the morning appears to be affecting the long fasting overnight somehow, despite taking a bedtime snack and having a glass of orange juice or milk around 12:30 a.m. when I get up to change ice packs.

Morning labs went very well, and my creatinin was down to 1.4, which made my coordinator and doctor very pleased. Every thing else was in the normal range, or explainable from the medications. My blood sugars are not really a concern, at this point, apparently, since it seems to be impossible to really attempt a good balance for the first month. However, they did change the amount of insulin I was taking, increasing the morning amount and decreasing the evening amount by a like measure, to avoid the low readings in the morning. Also, the Prednisone was cut again - this time by half - so that I have gone from 200 mg to 40 mg in less than two weeks. It is unbelievable that it has been less than two weeks! Two weeks ago today, I was in the hospital getting ready for the surgery the next day. Now, I am free of dialysis, feeling better than I have in months - or years - and looking forward to each new day.

The head of the labs at the Shands clinic met with us at clinic today. She had excuses for everything, and indicated that nothing had been changed. However, the courier who spent the entire time we were in labs drinking juice and not making runs was out when I went in this morning, and it was made perfectly clear - in my presence - that runs were now to be every fifteen minutes instead of every half hour. It was also made perfectly clear that the courier was supposed to courier, not sit around. “When he shows up, he takes the next shipment” were the words used. In any event, whether because of me or in spite of me, everyone was much more friendly, courteous, apparently concerned, and the laboratory results came back in record time.

I found out that fluid buildup around the eyes and possible blurred vision are a primary concern affecting my ability to drive. I hope to bring this up at my next clinic on Thursday, as I have not experienced this and would love to be able to drive to be able to get back to work. I also found out that I no longer have to wear a mask, unless around contagious people or in a large crowd. Also, I can go swimming in my own pool, but do not believe that a strenuous swimming workout would be good. Wading around could feel good, however, in the humidity and heat of a late Florida September. We have decided not to go the home football game on Saturday, just because of the crowds. This is still something I have to watch out for. I miss going to the games, but I do believe that having a good kidney for next season and the one after that and the one after that is far more important.

Two Weeks and Counting