Until a couple of years back, I used to take about 6 pills a day which was considered to be a small number for someone on dialysis. Most of these were simple things like Vitamin supplements. Today I take about 20 pills a day.
The last year or so especially has been rough. It's been one thing after another. Like healthy people, I had become quite complacent about my health thinking I was doing fairly well and that this would go one forever. However, the last few problems have been like a rude awakening. My body is not infallible after all.
Ask someone who has been for a while on dialysis what bothers them? It is likely that they would have got used to dialysis but it is the co-morbidities that come along with kidney failure that are most bothersome. If it was only dialysis that we had to deal with, we might deal with it pretty well. Add the host of issues with almost every organ in the body that confront you on a regular basis - and suddenly things become very difficult.
I have been lucky to be able to get access to daily nocturnal home hemo. At times I wonder, with this modality itself, I am struggling to cope with the accompanying issues, what would have happened if I would have been on thrice weekly? There's not one doubt in my mind that I would not have survived this long.
And yet, there are many people, many of whom I personally know, who despite being on thrice weekly and some even twice weekly have been on dialysis for longer than I have! People compliment me for my courage and determination. My secret is the long hours of dialysis I get daily. Not my will-power, not my mental strength.
I feel I have done nothing compared to these people and I get more than my fair share of credit. It is fairly easy to lead a normal life by being on daily nocturnal.
Now, after so many years, I have started feeling vulnerable. The issues that have come up lately have made me think of a lot of things. I become depressed and irritated more easily. A simple email, a Whatsapp message, a sentence said by someone around me are all enough to piss me off completely - sometimes for days on end. I have ended up offending many people who truly care for me and I feel really bad about this.