Kidney Walk Participant and Supporter
I was diagnosed with Stage 3 CKD on January 21, 2009 after getting some routine lab work completed. It was evident that my Serum Creatinine levels just weren’t right. I had some type of kidney problems when I was very young but I didn’t’ know exactly what. The thing I really noticed was the Gout attacks were happening more frequent due to elevated uric acid level. The doctor told me that he thought I had some degree of hypertensive nephrosclerosis also due to some medications I was taking like Motrin and Indocin. The Motrin and Indocin were for the Gout attacks. He switched my Gout medicine to Colchine. He also told me the blood pressure medicine I was talking, Lisinopril can have a reversible affect on Creatinine levels. But since it was controlling my blood pressure and I was tolerant of it, he recommended I stayed on it.
I’m a very positive person and by nature, I knew my attitude would be paramount in dealing with this “minor inconconvience as I refer to it. I dealt with cancer so I had a reference point. Attitude is 80 percent of dealing with anything. I can control my attitude so I can control CKD. If I wake up, it’s a good day which means my good days are easily achieverable. My good days aren’t tied to money or material things.
One thing I do daily is listen to or read something “positive”” the first 15 minutes of the day. A video, tape or whatever, it sets my whole day up. Listing to news the first thing in the morning wasn’t conductive to starting my day in a positive mode.
Okay, I have CKD, what am I going to do about? My motto has always been in dealing with problems, acknowledge it, and Fix it, Move. I had to come up with a CKD (SIP) Self Improvement Plan.
The first thing I do was to read up on it and find exactly what CKD means and what my options were. At the end of the day, the doctors wouldn’t solve this; it would be me because it’s my responsibility. I had to do whatever to help my buddy, my kidney. I knew It couldn’t be cured it but I could lessen the damage it was doing to my buddy. High Blood pressure was at the lot of the list for controlling CKD which I pretty much had under control. Lifestyle changes such as losing weight, exercising, and meditating, eating less salt and drinking less alcohol can help lower your blood pressure. I never add salt to anything now and it doesn’t bother me. Drinking alcohol and salt weren’t necessary to my well being anyway so they were easy.
I came up with a plan that could work for me. I started going to the gym. I’m not a diet person because that would imply that it would be temporary which in reality it would be for the rest of my life. I had what I call my 1=4 theory. Because I go to the gym, it controls my Blood Pressure, Cholesterol and Glucose level and weight.
The next thing I did was to start using the “Live Strong” App. I started on 2000 a day calories that was just a baseline. I wasn’t totally “married” to that amount. It measures Calories, fat, Cholesterol, Sodium, Carbs, Fiber, Protein and Sugar. Everything I eat in a day, it tells me exactly what I consumed. The Sodium level is 2400MG. It takes me about 10 minutes to put everything in there. I can tell you how much Sodium I’ve consumed in 2016. For the month of April, I consumed 27478 or 2498 per day. Using this APP gave me a snapshot into exactly what my buddy was seeing. Someone told me that “it would take too much time for me” I told them, I can make 10 minutes time to help my buddy and save my life. Because I learned that if we analyze our life over 2 weeks, we will realize that there are small changes that can make that we can that can make a big difference. The app showed me that just a Big Mac has 540 calories and 960mg sodium. That is 1/4 of my calories and almost 1/2 of my sodium allowance for the day.
Since CKD doesn’t have outward symptoms, I had to get something as a constant reminder for me that I had CKD so that I wouldn’t forget. We sometimes forget that we have it. So I put a rubber band on my right wrist. In other words, the rubber band is my buddy. When I’m eating or wherever I’m doing, it’s a constant reminder. Anything I eat, I see and pull the rubber band. I’ll ask myself. Is for good for my buddy, my kidney? Maybe I’ll only eat half or none at all.
Being Captain Dee-Fense gave me the platform I have. I had to figure out what God has placed here for me to do with to the best of my abilities. It took me awhile but I finally found my Life Purpose; to help, motivate and inspire people whenever possible, thereby giving my life a sense of fulfillment and happiness.
I attend several charity events a year. Relay for Life, Mother against Drunk Drivers, Lupus, Autism and Kidney disease and many more. I’ve visit people on the cancer ward at Johns Hopkins. I also volunteer at 7 Senior Centers.
If I can somehow put a face on CKD and help to Inspire and motivate people to take control and take responsibility for making life long lasting changes, that I must do., it’s a no brainer.
At the end of the day, my life will be judge on what I do for others.
I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something. And I will not let what I cannot do interfere with what I can do”. ~Edward Everett Hale
I wondered why somebody didn’t do something. Then I realized, I am somebody!