I was diagnosed with Polycystic Kidney Disease in 2015. I had never gotten tested out of fear, even though it ran in my family.
The month before graduating college, I ended up in the ER with my first kidney stones. After scans and consulting with a nephrologist, they diagnosed me. It was the scariest moment of my life. Kidney disease has changed my life because now I am more aware of what I do with my body and I listen to my body better.
My mother passed in 2012 from renal failure. When she did, I had to take care of everything without family support. Thankfully I had my boyfriend and close friends who stepped in emotionally. Being diagnosed a couple of years later with the same disease that killed her was a big hit emotionally. I didn’t want to be like her...hiding her disease and her reality while not taking care of herself as well as she could have. I’m proud that I don’t let this rule me and I won’t let it break me down. I’ve overcome so much in my life, and I won’t stop because of this.
As far as keeping a positive outlook on life, I’ve decided to not keep things bottled up anymore. Along with that, if something bad happens I will find the positive result of the negative. Like a fender bender could be worse or ‘at least we weren’t a mile up the road on the highway’. Things could be worse, so I remind myself of that.
I wish more people knew about kidney disease. Listen to your kidneys, watch your sodium, and get tested if ANYONE in your family has it.
Location: Spokane, Washington