"Thanks for the Giving"

This blog post was made by Amy Staples on November 23, 2017.
"Thanks for the Giving"

Its that time of year again when “Happy Thanksgiving” abounds and surrounds us.  What thoughts are conjured in your mind when the word “Happy Thanksgiving” is heard? A big turkey meal with all the wondrous side dishes of mashed potatoes, gravy, salad, pie and more. A home full of friends, neighbors, family or co-workers who’re enjoying a good movie or playing football, watching a great game or busy in the kitchen preparing the meal or cleaning up after.

I suppose it's no different for those of us with kidney disease.  But, what if the words were changed from “Happy Thanksgiving” to a phrase of “Thanks for the Giving”? What thoughts are then brought forth? Go ahead, think about it.  Ponder, wonder.  I’ve thought about this for several weeks and here is what I’ve come up with.

Thanks to all those who work in organizations and periodicals like Home Dialysis Central (HDC), Home Dialyzors United (HDU), American Association of Kidney Patients (AAKP), Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD), National Kidney Foundation (NKF), American Kidney Fund (AKF), ESRD Networks, American Society of Nephrology (ASN), Annual Dialysis Conference (ADC), Nephrology News & Issues (NN&I), Renal & Urology News (RUN) and more.  Thanks to all those who work tirelessly to promote, advocate, educate and empower all those who are new, and the seasoned kidney persons.  Thanks for answering questions and providing the knowledge and camaraderie so fiercely needed.  Thanks to those who have no affiliation with the illness yet continue to give time and effort and yes passion to those of us who struggle daily with kidney disease. Thanks for the giving.

Thanks for the doctors, nurses, dietitians, social workers and more.  Thanks for the informed, educated and interaction.  Thanks for the focus and patience as we learn and understand the value of our own role in the pyramid as a patient and the support you give us as we steer our destiny in the right direction.  Thanks for being open to hearing us regarding our chosen modality, our frequency of treatments and more. Thanks for listening to hear instead of listening to respond.  Thanks for continuing to educate yourselves with the ever changing field of medicine and the dialysis community. Thanks for the giving.

Thanks for the amazing out of the box thinkers in research and development. Thanks for those who continue to search for a cure to illnesses like Alports Syndrome, Polycystic Kidney Disease, Diabetes, High Blood Pressure and more.  Thanks to searching for a cure for all those diseases whom contribute to kidney failure. Thanks to those thinkers in developing things like new, improved and advanced dialysis machines.  Thanks to those great developers of things like implantable artificial kidneys, and preserving and lengthening the durability and life of A/V fistulas and grafts.  Thanks for the giving.

Thanks to the friends and acquaintances, oftentimes faceless yet still vital in our quest. Thanks for your presence as we try to rise above the complications and perils of living with kidney disease or failure.  Thanks for listening to us vent.  Thanks for all the answers to question, advice, comfort, laughs and good wishes. Thanks for the giving.

Thanks to all the owners and admins to groups, blogs and more for opening your hearts and cyber homes in an effort to assist and empower all those with kidney disease.  Thanks for moderating, breaking up fights, reminding us to be adults.  Thanks for the links, the photos, the literature and the help on our collective and singular journeys in this maze of obstacles and discovery through kidney disease. Thanks for the friendships.  Thanks for the giving.

Thanks to fellow patients, care-partners and more involved in groups like NKF’s Kidney Advisory Committee (KAC), PEERS Mentor Program, the Kidney Health Initiative (KHI), ESRD Networks’ Patient Advisory Committee (PAC), Learning Area Network (LAN), Network Patient Representative (NPR) and more. Thanks for all your advocacy in our behalf and despite your own health issues.  Thanks for the passion, endurance and hope for the future.  Thanks for the giving

Thanks to all the care-partners and friends who stand with us side by side through thick and thin.  Thanks for helping us clean up after blood spills.  Thanks for going with us to appointments, taking notes and doing research for us online.  Thanks for the hugs, kind words, sleepless nights of worry and “good job” comments.  Thanks for the perseverance of mind and spirit and the gentleness of heart.  Thanks for the giving.

Lastly and most heartfelt with tears and sadness yet uplifting of hearts thanks to those who’ve passed on.  Thanks for your courageous spirits through your own crusades of kidney disease.  Thanks for your impervious drive for research, answers, advocacy and hope.  Thanks for your endeavors and heroic efforts to befriend, buoy up and strengthen those around.  Thanks for your friendships.  Thanks for your voices, and the echos we still hear.  Thanks for the giving.

Does this make you think a little differently about “Thanks for the Giving”? I hope so. May we all be reminded of those who give in our behalf each day, week, month, year. May this remind us that in our own heroic efforts, we are never alone.  So, Thanks for the Giving.


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