Not long after we had Cadel, Dan started to notice that he was having a lot of headaches and back ache, and just generally felt lousy a lot of the time. We went to one GP she said he needed to loose weight and de stress. By the time I was pregnant with Hamish he developed a flu that seemed to linger and linger, He went to our regular GP, who took his blood pressure.. it was in the extremely high range. She did some tests and detected signs of kidney damage, and referred him to a Kidney specialist.
They nephrologist ran even more tests including a biopsy and diagnosed Dan with IGA nephrology, a form of kidney disease. Most likely he had it for 10 years before it was detected. This means that his kidney is deteriorating at a much more rapid rate than the general population. At that time they put him on blood pressure meds to slow the damage to the kidney. We changed our diet and lost loads of weight, and generally got healthy.
Fast foward to a recent routine check up at the kidney specialist, tests showed that Dan’s kidneys are still deteriorating at quite a high rate and that basically he is too have dialysis within 5 years if this doesn’t slow down. The doctor puts him on more meds, an immune suppressant and steroids. He is to limit his salt intake as much as possible. Dan is only 32. Even if he does well, he will certainly need to have a transplant within the next ten years.
In the last couple of weeks I have struggled with this news. It all seems so unfair. He is a young man and healthy, we’ve never smoked, or drank excessively. And above all we have two small boys that need their father around. He now has to take 8 tablets a day. I’m struggling to find meals that we all enjoy that contain no salt or almost no salt. Even the most basic ingredients tend to have a fair amount of salt. Tinned tomatoes, stock, dried beans etc. Its seems the only way to avoid copious amounts of salt is to cook everything from scratch… thanks goodness I am not working at the moment and have the time to do this.
Luckily Dan has been a rock, he is calm and has the most amazing will power when it comes to his diet. On the other hand I have been worried constantly, you see I’m not a fly by the seat of my pants kind of girl and am very anxious about the future. Most of all the lesson I am learning now is that I need to live in the moment.
I call this the elephant the room because I feel like sometimes my blogging can be a little superficial, I haven’t talked about so many issues that are important to me, as I don’t want offend. It seems like talking about politics or religion at a dinner party. On the other hand though this is something that I am really struggling with.
Anyhow now its out there, and I can go back to blogging about cushions, softies and overlocking. Thanks for reading and please feel free to slip some salt free recipes my way.
Ps how cool is the kidney in a jar… I’ll be buying one for Dan, its available here