I was first diagnosed at 25 years old. I had just had my son and I was experiencing hypertension.
When they ran my blood-work they noticed that my creatinine was a little high. After being hospitalized for a week, I was given blood pressure medications and told that there was some damage done to my kidneys. I was told that I should be fine and that in 20 years I may start to see a decline with my kidneys. Fast forward 3 years and my kidneys were falling and my condition was getting worse. Within the next 2 years, I went from stage 3 to stage 5. Dialysis started this year for me in February 2017.
Kidney failure has made me appreciate life more. Without dialysis, I wouldn't be alive so I'm grateful for that. It doesn't mean it's easy. My biggest fear is getting an infection, getting worse and not being able to live my life.
I wish more people knew about kidney failure and how scary it is and that it can happen to anyone. Stay away from ibuprofen and over the counter medicine. Dialysis is draining and really can become depressing after a while.
With everything that is going on, I try to keep a positive outlook on life. I tell myself I'm alive. I have options and things could always be worse. I count my blessings.
My diagnosis and situation is hard to talk about. People give you the pity look or treat you like you're glass about to break. It makes it difficult to reach out for help, but the reality is, I need help. I need a living kidney donor.
If you are interested in learning about becoming a LIVING DONOR click here
Patient information you may need for starting the process with the hospital:
Name: Jennifer Nicholson
Location: West Warwick RI
Date of Birth: 5/27/86
Donor Blood Type Needed: Type O, however a paired exchange is an option. This means that if your kidney isn't a match for Jennifer, you can still help save her life by donating to someone else in need who is a match with you. Then Jennifer will be matched with a different donor that is suitable for her. Ultimately you are helping save two people's lives.