Before the transplant surgery Mike's nephrologist shared some words of wisdom with us. In essence Ted told us that after the surgery things would get better, and then worse, and then better and then worse... but each time things went downhill, the low would still be better than how things were pre-transplant. And every time things got better, it would be better than it had been in ages. We have found those words of wisdom to not only be VERY comforting, but very TRUE.
In December when Mike was hospitalized with Parvo we knew that these types of things were to be expected, so we weren't caught off guard or overly stressed (just tired). Yes, Mike was super sick, but it was a different sick and it was temporary and we knew it would get better. And there were ups and downs after that, but things kept improving overall through the winter and spring months. At the end of April and in early May Mike was working regularly - in between follow up appointments and physical therapy (deferred maintenance) - and we were able to make plans with some hope of keeping them. Shortly after my last post we even got news that Mike's red blood cell count was high enough for him to be out of the anaemic range for the first time in THIRTEEN YEARS.
Then on a Tuesday morning in mid-May Mike woke up with sore joints in his hands. Small joint pain and stiffness is a major symptom of Parvo in non-immune suppressed adults (I had it) and for Mike it was a symptom that turned up late, caused some agony, and stayed around for a while. Two days later Mike was at BIDMC for blood tests and a Parvo test. We waited all weekend for the results (it takes 4 days), but I'm going to brag and say that Mike was a champ. He didn't let it get him down. One of the reasons why he was able to stay positive was that we knew Ted had predicted all of this, but still with a great final outcome.
After four more rounds of IViG in late May the symptoms of Parvo are quickly going away (and should stay away this time), and because Mike recognized what was going on immediately he never got even close to as sick as he was in December. He's still battling the virus a bit, but the days when he feels good he says it's the best he's felt in probably three years. That's pretty damn good! Imagine how good he's going to feel another month from now when he's both in better shape and another month further away from all of this Parvo nonsense?!
Meanwhile, we have a friend who has started his campaign to find a kidney and we'd like to do what we can to help him get to where we are today - on the way UP! David is a genuinely good guy. He's brave, he's generous in spirit, he's kind, he's thoughtful. His story is a lot like ours - his sister was lined up to donate a kidney and during the final rounds of testing they found Stage 1 ovarian cancer. In effect, David's illness may have saved his sister's life, but now he needs our help to save his. If you could share the post about David, pass on his website www.KidneyForDavid.org, or simply support him on facebook, we'd be ever so grateful. You know the drill - sharing the story is everything and somewhere out there is the match for David so he can begin his journey UP.
Gratefully, Samantha (& Mike)