Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The last post & a familiar chorus

I am two years on dialysis today. I wish it was winter, because it is the kind of anniversary that I would like to cloak in darkness. I would rather not have opened the curtains today.

The most relevant statistics now stand as follows:

There have been 728 nights of dialysis (two nights off, with permission from my consultant).

That amounts to 5,824 hours of being attached by a line that runs from my tummy to my machine.

Or 242 full days.

I have carried 1,092 litres of dialysis fluid around in my tummy throughout the daytime hours, and by night a total of 8,736 litres have flowed in and out of my abdomen.

I have gone through (and duly recycled) roughly 3,504 cardboard boxes.

I have taken about 8,000 tablets and 30 energy injections.

I have disposed of about 200 bags of hazardous medical waste.

I have spent 0 nights in hospital

I have now been on the transplant list for 22 months.

The average wait for a new kidney is now something like four years.

Now for the really bad news (not really, really). I have decided to stop writing this blog. I didn’t envisage two years of this when I started, and now there is the fear that I will start to repeat myself, because when you re-live the same routine day in, day out, you inevitably return to the same gripes. There is nothing worse than a writer who recycles old metaphors.

I realise I may be doing a disservice to the few people who read Limbo on a regular basis, and who have hung on in there, waiting for the glad tidings of a new kidney.

To those followers, I offer my sincere apologies, but I also advise that in a few months’ time, if I ever cross your mind, that you imagine me, post-transplant, on a beach somewhere - albeit covered from head to toe in Factor 50 - but sipping some exotic cocktail, and enjoying my freedom, released from the infernal groundhog day that is peritoneal dialysis.

Regina xxoxx


  1. Y'know, I wasn't just reading here desperately waiting for the next bit of transplant news, I was just enjoying your writing. I don't imagine I was the only one, what with you having 46 google reader subscribers and 55 followers. Please do update here if there are any further developments, or let us know if you decide to keep blogging some other way. Best of luck with everything.

  2. I'd just ditto Andrew's comment. Really, Regina, you write much too well to simply stop!

  3. That genuinely is a real pity.

    You have such an amazing way with words. Your blog, of everything I read on the web, was by far the most fluid, eloquent and enjoyable, which never lessened in quality over time.

    Thank you for your honesty; the highs, the lows, the belly laughs and the moments of practically being reduced to tears.

    There were times when I'd forgotten this was a blog about dialysis, it became a compulsive and thoroughly enjoyable read.

    You have a real gift, good luck with wherever you choose to take it next, and make sure to let us all know when you get your transplant.

    Anon E Moose

  4. Andrew - Thank you for the good luck wishes, and for your praise for my writing. I'm sure when I get that kidney, I'll want to tell the world, so it's likely I'll start spreading the good news right here.

    Francis - Maybe I'll start another blog at some stage. About something totally fun and different. I'll call it Let's Limbo!

  5. Anon E Moose - That is high praise indeed, and I'm not sure I'm worthy of it, but many thanks. Limbo has been my own little therapy session, and I shall miss it, but enough talk of sickness. Bored of the whole thing now.

  6. Regina, thank you for your blog over the last year. It has helped me through my first year of Disastrous Dialysis.
    I do hope that you start the Let's Limbo blog soon. You have a good voice and write so well. You were very eloquent in your appreciation of Dr Fitzgerald. I look forward to reading whatever you decide to write, when you decide to write it. Just leave a little note here, so we can follow on and find you.
    Again, thank you for what you have shared and the best hopes for a happy resolution.
    JHarper, Regina, SK

  7. I'm with Andrew. Best of luck

  8. When I saw the title "The Last Post" in my reader I briefly thought the wait was over. Sadly not.

    Shite! (I do not have a way with words as you do Regina.)

    Come back when you get the transplant. We all hope its soon.

  9. Oh, what a shame for us all! I'll miss your lovely posts and your excellent way of phrasing what really must be a horrible time for you. I thought when I saw the title that you might have gotten the call, but alas no. I think of you the odd time and wonder how you are and if a kidney has come your way. A friend of a friend has just received his second kidney from his mother, I'm so glad to see he's recovering, and hope the same happens for you soon.
    Let us know if you're setting up anywhere else, and if any good news comes your way. Best of luck with everything xx

  10. Regina, Really sorry to see you're not posting anymore as like all the other commenters I always enjoyed your excellent writing, regardless of the subject matter.
    Don't stop writing because you have a real talent for it. Best of luck getting a quickie divorce from Brendan.
    Take care,

  11. J Harper - I wish you the best possible resolution too...I'm delighted to hear this blog helped you through dialysis - that's reason enough for me to have started it and kept it up for over a year. Do let me know over the email if you get 'the call'.

    Laney Tiggy - Thanks for your good luck wishes. All good karma is gratefully received.

    Eoin Madden - I should have worded the title of this post more carefully! Sorry for getting your hopes up!

    Garret - It's always good to move on to new things. I'll keep writing, but maybe just in different formats. And about a variety of subject matters. Thanks for your comment...

  12. Regina,

    You don't need me or any of your readers to tell you that your blog has been truly excellent, well-written and from the heart.

    You know yourself if it has come to a natural end, but you have definitely given a voice to people in your situation who might not have had a public (even reluctant!) spokesperson before.

    Well done nad best wishes,


  13. Ciaran - Thanks for that, Ciaran. I enjoyed the writing...good to have somewhere to whinge and moan about it all.

    I hope all is good in Galway and in the Tribune.

  14. Sad to see you go, I've really enjoyed reading your posts. Best of luck with new ventures and we're all keeping everything crossed that you get 'the call' soon.
    Take care and best wishes

  15. Truly sad news Regina. I echo the sentiments of all the commenters above. You pour your soul out in the most eloquent manner. I hope you will continue to write about whatever takes your fancy. I wish you and Brendan good journeys. Brendan to the scrap heaps and you to the heady heights of wherever you wish to reach the heady heights of.

  16. hv.banks@gmail.comJune 29, 2011 at 2:01 AM

    Good luck in the future, Regina.
    Colin recommended your blog to me on Facebook.
    I can't but admire your resilience.
    In 1974 (yes 1974) I was on Dialysis too, but since then got 2 kidneys which have kept me going for a total of 37 years up to now.. So keep up the spirits - I'm sure that with your optimism you will get what you richly deserve.

  17. Feck. Totally understandable though. Writing is not easy and when it's about one topic, it's harder again. I really enjoy your writing and I hope that you continue it in some form after the new part arrives!

    It would be very interesting to hear about it when it happens though.

    Good luck Regina.

  18. I dropped in here every month or so to read your posts over the past year. I wish you the very best of luck for the future and hope we will encounter your writing in other, less challenging circumstances in months and years to come. Best wishes.

  19. Only spotted this the other day, then had a busy weekend and the laptop was mostly closed. Sorry to hear we can't read your writing (for a while?) but happy for you. Sometimes having an outlet to moan is a good thing, sometimes it encourages. And I mean that in a strictly takes one to know one way! Looking forward to any future blogs and to hearing of the back of Brendan soon. x