Anybody who goes through an illness or near death experience, truly understands how precious life is and I am no exception.
For two years my life was a roller coaster. Physical pain, emotional turmoil combined with compromised quality of life. I certainly defied death but I was not really living with dialysis, physical handicap and weakness. I just existed. It all changed with the kidney transplant. My life quality really improved and so did my view of looking at life.
You get used to the misery of your life. For two years I was in combat mode. My days were filled with dialysis, tests scans, medications, health issues and with the transplant, it all disappeared. Once I was home and adjusting with new kidney my days were empty. It felt weird in a good way. I no longer had to prepare mentally for days of dialysis. It was unbelievable.
Things started improving even more after three weeks once my stitches were removed. I could move freely and it felt so good. All that weakness and tiredness was gone. I could eat better and drink water! Lots of water. No restrictions! I ate happily and enjoyed food. It was great not to visit hospital every alternate day. That was such a mood lifter.
I focused on my physical rehabilitation. I relearned walking, climbing stairs, helping myself up from the floor in case I had a fall. After being chaperoned everywhere for two years, I went on my own for a walk near my house. I stopped every two minutes feeling tired and breathless but it felt amazing. Independence feels good. I went shopping with my friend and walked around to an extent that she had to ask me to slow down and sit for sometime. It felt great as the last time I had visited a mall, I was on a wheelchair and it was a terrible shopping experience.
As of today, I cannot walk fast, climb stairs easily and have balancing issues . I get tired easily.I don’t look the same. I have to take heavy medications which plays havoc with your moods and appearance. I have to avoid crowds but these are small adjustments for the quality of life that I have now.
My attitude toward life has changed a lot. I used to get worked up on small things but now I am much more chilled out. I enjoy the small things in life. Taking a walk in the park, working in my small terrace garden, reading a good book and eating without restrictions. These things sounds very ordinary but my new attitude makes them luxuries that every one should appreciate and enjoy. I am now more empathetic towards people going through tough situations. Biggest learning is value and enjoy your now, you never know when it will taken away from you.
The emotional healing is much tougher though. There are moments when I suddenly feel that I am on the dialysis bed or waiting for the doctor in the hospital. Sometimes I wake up in the middle night and some of the moments from the hospital plays out in my mind. Its scary! It is not easy to forget. Five six months after my transplant, Mamata suggested me to write down my entire journey. She said it will help people who are going through a life threatening disease and it will also help you to get it out of your system. It will be like a therapy. I agreed.
It was not easy though. I was sceptical if anybody would be interested in my story which was quite dark and gloomy. I started to write and every time I attempted to write, I would end up in tears.In fact, I have cried writing most of these blogs. It is not easy to relive the past but I am happy I did.
I called up people to find out what happened, spoke to my daughter for the unadulterated version of the situations. All this time,I had never bothered to ask anyone what happened during the days I was unconscious. I was amazed at the gravity of the situation. I never realised it as I was unconscious. A lot of information was new for me too. Writing it all down has been a great catharsis.
I am overwhelmed with all the appreciation and praise I have got from all those who read my blogs. It was wonderful when I received positive comments and messages and asking for the next blog. It made the entire exercise worthwhile. A big heartfelt “Thank You” to all for reading my health journey.
Before I sign off I would like to reiterate “ health is not valued till sickness comes” I paid a heavy price to realise that and I urge you to learn from my story and take care !
Many of you have suggested that I should take up writing and I am. I have set up a Facebook page called Miracle Moments where I will be publishing blogs on various topics. Do subscribe to the page.