A full-time working professional who has owned her own business with her husband of 30 years, Annie loves to travel and has been fortunate enough to enjoy an African safari, deep sea fishing in Mexico, and a beautiful tour of Europe. But in January of 2018, Annie suddenly gained 37 pounds of water weight over only 10 days. Concerned, she visited her doctor, who immediately admitted her to the hospital and performed a kidney biopsy. Annie was told both of her kidneys were functioning at less than 10% and she started dialysis the very next morning. Her life as she knew it changed almost instantly and she began what she calls her “new reality.”
Annie now faces dialysis three days a week for four-hour sessions. She says “I am grateful that I have the option of being on dialysis, but it’s a very time-consuming process and it makes me very tired. It’s hard to find the energy to go back to work on these days, but this is my new normal.” Annie says that her mindset and choice to be positive and hope for the best is what keeps her going.
Annie has been put on the waiting list for a deceased donor, but is hoping that she will be able to find a living donor in the near future.
She is looking forward to getting back to having the energy to run her business with her husband, Mike, pictured above with her in Paris. She wants to be able to spend time with her family and dogs, as well as travel (pictured here with her stepdaughter, Katelyn, in the Swiss Alps) like she used to – something she can’t do while she is on dialysis.
“While I have been aware of organ donation, and I am listed as a donor on my driver's license, no one could describe to me what it means to be on the ’other side‘ as the person needing the donation. I've learned the sad reality there are far more people needing a kidney than there are kidneys available. To anyone who might be considering a kidney donation; thank you from all of us dealing with kidney disease or failure. You give us hope.”