Adventures of a Kidney Donor

December 13, 2010

Blood Test Round 2

Another blood test today to see if the recipient and I are a match. I hope so! It wasn’t fun to slog through the snow to get my blood drawn and then schlep across town to ship it to U of M, but all for a good cause of course! It beats driving to Ann Arbor so I am lucky I can get things done in town.

The lab does a good job but one of the phlebotomists there has ZERO personality.  She drew me last time and I saw her today. I showed her all of my paperwork from U of M and said: “Remember you helped me out last time, this is to be a potential kidney donor…” She gave me a withering look :”I do NOT remember you at all.” OK then. I feel stupid. Seriously, how many kidney donors are they getting in this little operation and I was just there a month ago. She doesn’t remember me??? I don’t expect admiration or anything but sheesh. I remember trying to chat with her last time to no avail.

My experience is small potatoes compared to what other people face. Almost everyone has been wonderful and they fall all over you when they find out you are a donor. I remember Jackie dealing with some pretty awful people in dialysis. How do these kidney patients endure that day after day? It’s bad enough to deal with the disease and dialysis, let alone insensitive people.

So the other phlebotomist who drew me today had MUCH more personality. She asked me why I was getting blood drawn and when I told her it was for potential kidney donation her eyes widened. Then it all came pouring out. There is kidney disease in her family. Her mom has had a donated kidney from a cadaver for over 20 years.  She wanted to know about the paired donation program. I think she has kidney disease herself but didn’t want to pry. I suspect PKD since that is hereditary.

So I gave her the name of the paired donation coordinator at U of M.  I hope she is on her first step in the journey to a new kidney! How wonderful to be able to share the news about the paired donation program. It made me feel sad when she said: “What if I can’t find anyone in my family or a friend to donate?” I sure hope someone in her life steps forward.

Go to List of Resources on Kidney Donation


  1. You are such a wonderful role model for others. Such a positive force of energy. You bring the positive into this very challenging and sometimes overwhelming situation. Would love to have you speak to our transplant support group sometime. Joan

    Comment by Joan Smith — December 14, 2010 @ 7:19 am |Reply

    • I would love too Joan, but maybe after I actually give! Sure hope I am a match for this person.

      Comment by Anne — December 14, 2010 @ 12:23 pm |Reply

  2. As Aunt Beth says–some people have the personality of a doorknob!

    Comment by Jan Taylor — December 16, 2010 @ 1:32 pm |Reply

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