Two Months

It’s been another month and things just keep getting better.  During this time, monitoring my meds and getting labs done has been priority.  This requires an hour and half drive to Indy twice a week and then waiting 3 hrs to see a doctor to review my labs.  This continued a few weeks, then reduced to once a week.  When I didn’t go to clinic, I had labs done locally.  The following week, the doctor was satisfied with my progress and decided I could discontinue clinics and start monthly visits to his office while get labs weekly.  I will see him tomorrow for my first office visit in Indy, then he will see me monthly during his visit to Lafayette.  I will also start seeing my nephrologist monthly in December.  It is so nice to not have to make those trips to Indy.

My labs have continued to bounce around the past month.  My cret level seems to go from 1.2 to 1.6 and back.  They thought I possibly had BK Virus, but the test came back negative.  They will continue to monitor that monthly, I believe for 2 yrs.  The fluctuation of my levels isn’t abnormal, but not something that is good to see.  One cause could be more activity and level hydration.  Now that I am feeling the results of a functioning kidney and the affects of the surgery are diminishing, I am not content to sit around.  I have been taking on projects to fill my time.  Nothing strenuous or requiring lifting or anything to compromise my recovery.  I was told to drink 3L of water a day.  When I first got home, I was drinking 5-6L a day with my water by my side at all times.   I still drink 3L a day, but I imagine sometimes that it all.

When I began to feel better, my first project was home made tamales.  Something I had always wanted to do, but just didn’t ever find the time for a dish that takes 2 days.  Nothing strenuous to it, but a lot of time on my feet that i was not used to.  It was rewarding, but very time consuming.  4.5lb roast makes about 40 tamales.  I followed the authentic recipe down to making my own masa dough and using dried peppers and corn husks I sourced from the Mexican grocery.


Living in the sticks, we don’t get cable, which actually is a good thing, except for the lack of good high speed internet.  We have zero interest in satellite TV, so we have cut the cord and overall pretty satisfied with the result of OTA TV.  We started out with a mini  150 mile antenna.  It worked amazingly well for the $25 paid, but I wasn’t satisfied, so I went old school.  Getting this set up was my next project which included upgrading the antenna and setting up a TiVo.  We also had the local Wi-Power install internet.  While setting up the antenna, I ran new lines down into the media room and put in a j-box for the internet connection.  New set up pulls in over 60 channels.



With plenty of time on my hands, I spent 3 days detailing my car.  Starting with a basic wash, a clay bar clean, power polish, a coat of sealant and a final coat to wax.   Then a full clean and sealant on the wheels and a thorough interior detail followed up with an engine bay clean and paint chip detail.  Still, nothing strenuous, but a lot of up and down which puts a strain on my mid section.

Now that she is all purty, I made a day trip over to Grissom Air Museum to see the sites and get a couple pics.

During the past month, something absolutely wonderful has happened.  My grand daughter was born on Friday October 13.  Beautiful and healthy Everleigh Rose Johnston.  As a side treat, we watched her big sister for the weekend.  It was her first time to spend the night away.

The more and more active and involved my project became, I believe my water intake dropped.  That with my increased activity, I believe affects my cret level.  I am spending this weekend slowing down, increasing my water and hoping my labs tomorrow will show an improvement.  I don’t think they are “bad”  and some fluctuation is normal the first couple months, even to a year, but I would like to see them stay under 1.2.

Tomorrow will be 8 weeks since the transplant.  Overall, I think things are going very well.  I feel so much better overall.  As a small test to myself, while at the air base museum, I climbed the observation tower.  It wasn’t much, I believe 4 flights off stairs, the pictures above are from the top.  It would have previously given me issues, but I didn’t have trouble making it to the top without stopping.  I was slightly winded, but didn’t get the panic feeling or shortness of breath like previously.

This post drifts off topic and rambles some, but I wanted to post about how things are going in my daily life to reflect on life after transplant.  While, I am not back up to 100%, I am not stuck sitting in a recliner and able to do most anything I was previously, with the exception of lifting, exerting myself and drinking alcohol.  Things are getting better and I owe a big thanks to my brother for it all.