Thursday, July 11, 2013

T+1 Year: The Results

It's hard to believe it's been a year.  It seems like just yesterday that I was waiting for the doctors to come out and tell me the results of the surgery.



This year has been an amazing year of growth for Joe.  He has so much energy that he runs circles around me.  I'm fine with that.  It's like watching a walking running miracle every day.

Mayo Clinic is nothing if not thorough.  Joe went through an entire week of testing before the transplant to see if he was eligible for the surgery.  Since the transplant, he has done routine blood-work and doctor visits.  However, yesterday, marked his one year birthday.  With that, comes more testing from Mayo; biopsy, blood-work, 24 hour blood pressure monitor, bone density, etc.

All the tests boil down to kidney function.  So, what is his expected kidney function?

It's been said that we start to die the minute we are born.  This is true in regards to kidney function.  Although every body is different, there is an easy formula to estimate kidney function.  Start with 100% and subtract 10% for every decade (http://www.ageworks.com/course_demo/513/module3/module3.htm).  For instance, Joe, in his mid-40's, should be at 65%.  Give or take.  When he was diagnosed two years ago, he was 11%; a horrible number.  One year later, right before the transplant, he had slipped to 8%; a fatal number.  Kris, Joe's donor, also in her 40's, should be in the 60% range.  However, her tests came back at 96%; an amazing number!  Mayo, the leader in transplants, said they had NEVER had someone her age with that number!

It seems reasonable to think that when you remove one kidney, you divide the function in half.  However, the kidneys are amazing and they know when they are the only filter.  They start to filter more and can reach filtration rates similar to that of two kidneys.

So, what is Joe's function?

84%!!!!  In fact, Joe is doing so well, the doctor told him that he doesn't have to come back for an entire year AND he doesn't need any more biopsies!!!!!!!!  Praise God.

Our Time

It's not about us.  Well, it's never really been about us.  It's always been HIS story.  We were merely the characters.

But, it's not our time to receive and take.  It's our time to give back.

As we sat in the waiting room, we saw the look of various stages of waiting, wondering, worrying.

We sat near one such waiter.  She started to tell us her story.  She has been a strong caregiver for years.  She has been the rock, taking care of daily functions.  The rock during multiple surgeries.  Multiple days, weeks, months in such hospitals.  And then it happened.

She started to sob.  She let it all out.

Joe and I looked at each other and immediately got up to embrace her.  We showered her with kind words and scriptures.  I told her I love her.  I don't even know her name but I know her pain.

As Joe and I walked out of the hospital, we looked at each other again.  We realized that it's no longer about us.  This is our time to give back.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

On Purpose

Dear Sweet (not so little anymore) Girl,

You are so precious.  We have been thinking of you and praying for you and God wanted me to tell you something.

God knitted you together in your mother's womb.  He made you, just the way you are, on purpose.  Read that last part again.  On purpose.  Purpose.  There is a purpose in this.  We might not know what it is right now.  We may never know.  And we don't need to.  We can rest knowing that God made you the way you are for a reason.

That reason may be to bring you closer to God.  I can't imagine that, as I see you sitting on the King's lap already.

The reason might be to bring others closer to God.  Others will look at you and marvel at your peace and joy in a time that might seem chaotic and uncertain.

I pray for healing.  I can't imagine what you are going through.

I pray for wisdom for the doctors.

I pray for continued peace for your family.  Your family is a light and a joy to everyone who meets you.

Finally, I pray that all the glory goes to God.  We don't know God's purpose, but we know He has a purpose.  You are fearfully and wonderfully made.  On purpose.

where Glory meets my suffering