On 3rd November, 2015, I received the most shocking news of my life. I sat there looking steadily at the Nephrologist as he told me I was at the end stage of a Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD). I couldn’t quite believe this because just the other day I was diagnosed with CKD, how come it is already at the end stage when there are five stages? I sat bewildered, tears welled up in my eyes as he offered me the very scanty options available for me to survive. As much as I tried to hold back the tears, I felt them streaming down my face, hot and very salty as they touched my lips. At this point, I had lost all of my faith, I could not think of anything. All I could think of was the seeming horror I had just discovered. I was drowned in fear. As I walked out of the clinic, I cried bitterly. I heard my friend’s voice like an echo, far away yet so close; saying, “Hold on Debbie, all will be well”. I couldn’t see how all was going to be well. For me, it was like the beginning of a journey of no return. Forgive me for sounding this pessimistic.
As we drove home, I called to inform my two sisters and my mum of the sad yet important news and of course they began informing family and friends; everyone they could possibly talk to at that time. Everyone who had not touched base with me in years began to reach out somehow; so many calls, texts, emails etc. Interestingly, everyone seemed to have a preferred solution to my latest challenge; both medically, spiritually, psychologically, physically and every way I could imagine. Everyone wanted to be there for me. Some even took it upon themselves to call me every day for prayers. I was simply overwhelmed with care. All of these, I sincerely appreciate.
After the stage of shock, I got to the acceptance stage. It then occurred to me that I had spoken to every other person except one, my creator, The One who formed me and knew me perfectly well. I felt all the more depressed. I dint know where to start from. I was very embarrassed. I was sorry and sad that I had to speak to Him last. Yes, He should have been the very first. I remembered some of my childhood Sunday school teachings, “those who call on Him will be saved”; “He is my present help in times of trouble”. Mama often told us, “He always listens, so just call Him and have faith”. So I summoned up the courage. I cried, I prayed, I reminded Him of some of His words which I knew, and had kept safe in my heart for trying times like this. I didn’t still get a feedback from Him after all these, but deep within me, I know He heard me, He always did. I thought about other times in my life when I needed Him, and He showed up for me; so I know He won’t leave me now. I have that inner peace.
At this point, living with both Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) and CKD, doesn’t matter anymore. I just don’t want to brood over what the doctors have to say about my life and miss the fun times I can still have. I am done fretting, though I feel some inner fear every now and then, especially when there is a strange pain, prolonged flu, bloated tommy or an extremely depressed feeling. For me, waking up every day means that God has not finished with me. Despite all the pain and discomfort, I am thankful for life. I am taking one day at a time and finally growing to accept that whatever you believe and constantly process in your mind, is what truly works for you so I am staying positive. I often feel that I am holding on to my last drop of faith but who knows, that is just the drop of faith I need to see me through. If you are reading this, please say a little prayer for me 🙂