One is the challenge of being able to keep up financially. We know that a transplant is expensive but even before transplant, there are already many expenses such as:
- twice a week injection of erythropoietin (around 1,200 PHP each)
- dialysis (around 1,500 PHP each if Philhealth benefit already consumed)
- dialyzer (changed/paid every 10 sessions especially if Philhealth session is already consumed)
- antibiotics (when there is an infection)
- donor testing and other expenses like tissue typing, CMV, HIV testing, transportation, food, etc.
- my own lab tests
- others (lotion to help relieve itching, TUMS, materials for dialysis like gloves, transportation after dialysis, etc.)
I plan to take freelance writing opportunities since working at home and choosing the work hours is possible so as not to put a strain on my health.
Of course there is the ongoing fundraising effort where everybody is welcome to donate. ( Instructions and form found here https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1KWEr_V0kkRbrxz8mx37l6_sB_8Gyedayu1m25kzhHDo/viewform )
Another challenge is overcoming being "paranoid" of certain things. Being afraid of having fever during dialysis again, I often worry of my dialysis access for example. Sometimes negativity ensues. Good thing I have a brave and patient wife to assure me everything is fine.
Fear of what is to come is another challenge. Bilateral nephrectomy alone is a major operation where both of my kidneys will be taken. Then there's the transplant. I can't help but think about what is to come. That is where words of support and encouragement from friends help. Facebook likes, comments and messages do help.
Avoiding infection is also a challenge. I avoid crowds, wear mask and I make sure I eat well. I had vaccinations before that can also help.
When a setback happens, staying positive is a major challenge. During my febrile episodes and when my wife was rejected as kidney donor, me and my wife relied on faith, prayers and the support of friends and relatives to cope.
So really, it is not easy to be in this situation but it does not mean that I should not smile already. I know that God allowed these things to happen because I can bear it. Life still must go on. I know that there's a rainbow after the rain. (Wait! Teka. Parang kanta yun ah.)
Have a nice day!