National Kidney Foundation Kidney Walk Philadelphia 2008

So this is my dad.  My father was a diabetic – a bad diabetic.  He was the kind of diabetic who made root beer floats with real ice cream and diet soda.  He was the kind of diabetic that ate butter on sticky buns, then upped his insulin to help his body compensate.

At some point, when you are a bad diabetic, the disease starts to kick your ass.  It robs you of things a little at a time.  You get a sore that won’t heal; your eyes start to go; you begin to have heart problems; your circulation slows down; you could lose your legs, like my dad did; and most of all, your kidneys stop working.

My dad’s kidneys stopped working in the early 1990’s, and he ended up on peritoneal dialysis.  That was good for him, because it allowed him to continue to travel and be active.  And it was thanks in part to the money raised by the National Kidney Foundation that things like peritoneal dialysis come to be. 

Eventually, my dad received a kidney from the wonderful family of a man who lost his life.  A portion of all of the money raised by the National Kidney Foundation goes towards organ donor awareness.  Imagine my surprise when I did manage to pull a team together!  And I got an even bigger surprise when that team generated more than $1100 raised to benefit the National Kidney Foundation!

Thank you, to my friends, my family, my team – who walked in memory of my dad – for helping raise this money!  I know my dad would have been so proud – and he would have enjoyed the walk around the zoo with his grandchildren and nieces!  It was a terrific experience, and I’m hoping we can do just as much to help again next year.

It was my goal when I decided to walk for the National Kidney Foundation to raise money that might help another family recognize the benefit of organ donation and the various treatments for kidney disease.  I wanted other families to know that kidney disease does not have to mean life is over and you curl up in a ball and wait for the rest of your body to shut down.  I wanted people to be aware that help is out there if you are battling kidney disease.

I set my fund raising goal at $200.  I thought I would be lucky to get that, even if I did get a team together.