Monday, February 03, 2020

Kidney Saga part 9

Wednesday afternoon the final and definitive results from my kidney biopsy arrived from UW. There was no longer any question. It is lupus. The kidney doctor and I discussed the medications I'd researched and then decided on the aggressive plan of attack. The medicines I would be taking would basically turn off my immune system, which was attacking my kidneys, long enough for the kidneys to recover. Then ... well, then it depended entirely on how my body reacted.

Having had a full day to research lupus and kidneys, and to absorb the news, I didn't feel a lot of reaction to the news. It's strange. I always assumed diabetes would be my demon. Lupus is new and scary, but not as scary as I would have thought it was going to be if you'd told me about this five years ago.

I know people with lupus who have managed to keep it in remission. It's not really all that uncommon, even. It is not an automatic death sentence. Scary, annoying, stressful and, yes, dangerous. But lots of people with lupus live very long and productive, happy lives. It all depends on so many different factors. So I didn't feel much of anything once I knew. The point was that I knew. For sure. This is what was happening, and this will dictate large portions of my life from here on out.

Of course, in order to survive the lupus, first I've got to survive the kidneys.

The lifeflight helicopter landed again, just past my window, around 2pm. I said a little prayer for whoever was on it. I heard it a handful of times during my stay in the room. Because it always landed in a pattern that took it past the window, it was very loud for a few moments when it came down.

At about 5pm I learned that Yakima was losing a hospital - the same hospital system that is linked to the one in my hometown that I decided NOT to go to, because I knew it was in bankruptcy (and I've had negative experiences there before). While it might not have affected my stay had I gone to it, the chances are very good I would have had a lot of issues with follow-up and such. The news definitely made me feel like I'd made the right choice in which Emergency Room to rush to on Friday morning.

I was also feeling a little melancholy, and started wishing I had another certain song on my playlist (but I don't have a copy of it on my phone):

Later in the evening, the nurse saw that I was still a bit hyper and emotional and suggested a walk. We attempted to reach the Pokestop, but it was just a little too far. On the walk I explained Pokemon Go to her, and why I'd taken it up (for the exercise) and how I hoped it would help me recover. She was amused at me catching a Pokemon while we walked. She said it seemed like a good way to get people up and going. I agreed.

And so to bed...

Full Kidney Saga