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Archive for February, 2012

Ok so today was an eventful day for me! Can I just say that I do believe that having to get a picture on your driver’s license is the most awful experience that a person has to endure. I do not enjoy getting my picture taken anytime much less when you have to stand that close to the camera. If you read Jason’s post last night you saw I had a little problem with some face cream. I will tell my side of that story in a bit. Now I was due to get my license renewed during my stay in the hospital, and I have just gotten around to renewing it. You know how you think you look one way, but when you have a picture to look at there is no denying what you truly look like. Unfortunately that was my reality today, I have been on large dosages of prednisone and I knew my face was a little swollen, but now I have a picture for 4 years to remind me. I am very thankful for how God has healed my body, and that the kidney is working great, but I am still a woman and have silly insecurities.

Thankfully you could not see my lizard face in the picture, but it is still a little swollen from the cream I have been using.LOL!! I have been using the cream to help with some dark spots that I have had due to sun damage and the effects of years of steroids. I thought it would be fine to use the cream every other day, so that is what I did. There were a couple of things I might should have done differently. One of those is I should have not used bleaching cream on the days I didn’t use the Retinol. Then after my face starting peeling off I decided to use my Clairsonic and scrub my face to get off the peeling skin. I’m pretty sure that was too much, I just thought it would be quicker to get all that peeling mess off. I think I have learned my lesson, due to the fact my face actually hurts. My face looks kinda shiny and really red in places. Putting on makeup was not fun today either, but I was afraid I would scare small children without it.

Jason and I have a couple of meetings tomorrow night and Friday and should have some 2givelife news to share soon. Continue to pray for Brent and Brian as they wait for a kidney.

Also we would like for you to pray for Will and Rebekah McGee. They will be traveling to Ethiopia tomorrow to meet their precious new baby boy Israel.

live from the crazy,

jenn

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Ever heard of Retinol 0.5 Refining Night Cream? Well if not let me tell you all about it. First lets read the fine print on the back of the product. INDICATIONS: Contains high concentration of pure retinol to revitalize the skin and help diminish signs of aging. Ideal for photodamaged, problematic, and congested skin. DIRECTIONS: High potency product. Please read important information on package insert ( what package insert) CAUTION: For external use only ( remember this is called refining night cream). Avoid contact with eyes. Can cause irritation, redness, or other signs of discomfort. Please read package insert before application ( refer to my earlier comment about the package insert).

Ok, I know you have got to be asking yourself why is he posting about something like Retinol. I’m so glad you ask. Remember today was my first day back at the office ( a full day away from Jenn without me keeping my eyes on her). When I walk in the door I noticed her face was a little flush  and maybe even a little swelled. One thing  I have learned over the years is to lean toward the cautious side when it comes to bringing attention to anything  a women that might not be taken in a way a male-ish mind perceives things, so I acted like I did not notice she looked like she had dipped her face into boiling water or she fell asleep in a tanning bed for a few hours, well maybe it was not quite that bad but definitely looked different from the last time I had seen her about 10 hours earlier this morning. So you know me it was eating me alive to know what she had done. So I take the safe approach and say, Honey do you feel ok , your face looks a little flush. And that is when she said it’s this cream I got from Stephanie and I think I over did it ( in my mind im saying YA THINK!). Jennifer said Stephanie said not to apply it but a few times a week, like every other day or every three days. Well we all know Jennifer (the free spirit)  and she wanted immediate results and wakes up after the first day and decides to apply it daily. She got her results all right, she said this morning when she got up her face looked like a lizzard…..now that would have been a sight to see because tonight she looks like she had an acid facial or a real bad diaper rash. She said her face was peeling off. One thing I’m sure she forgot to take into consideration was the high dosage of prednisone she was has been taking would make any irritation ten times worse. But of course she did not consult me before she began this in home face transformation, LOL!

I googled Retinol and I thought I was a chemist trying find out exactly what was in this little can.

I’m sure she will want to tell her side of the story, but it will be hard to cover this one up. I usually take the high road and let her make everyone think I’m the crazy one, but the old saying is the proof is in the pudding. HA! HA!

Word to the wise when someting says High Potency, take caution before appling to your face, if at all! I may have to got get her tube of Diestin.

Pressing on,

Jason

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Today we had a great conference call with some of the board members from Camp Bridges, which is a camp for children who have had organ transplants. This camp helps to assimilate children who have been sick most of their lives on how to get back into being a normal child. The camp is staffed with individuals to educate the kids on how to stay healthy. The camp offers so many neat activities for the children to participate in. They offer a week long camp for teenagers and a week camp for the families to participate in also. The camp encourages positive self-image and healthy transplant living. The camp gives the children a chance to meet new friends that are just like them and have the same questions and issues that they themselves have. I was so excited to find out one of the founders of Camp Bridges was one of my doctors, Ed Kohaut, when I was at Children’s Hospital. Dr. Kohaut was one of my favorites, because he never put limitations on me. I loved that!!

I can relate to how the kids feel coming off of dialysis and having an organ transplant. It was so hard to go from not being able to eat anything and not being able to do the same things my friends were doing. I always had to be careful with the activities I did before the transplant, and after I had to be careful where I went, due to the fact my immune system was suppressed from all the meds. Unfortunately it is still that way, the doctors have told me to be careful about being in big crowds. I’m not sure how happy they would have been knowing I went to see Wicked this weekend, but we bought tickets for Christmas. Can I just say it was awesome, and the girls loved it! It was Chloe’s first time to go to a full out musical and she survived it.

Be on the look out for some really exciting news about an event we are putting together with Camp Bridges and the Alabama Organ Center. Go check out there website at  http://www.campbridges.org/

We have a busy week with 2givelife and can’t wait to share our week with you all. Pray for Jason as he will be going back to his office for the first time in about 5 1/2 weeks, he has been working from home. I’m sure it will be a long day!

live from the crazy farm,

jenn

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Need A Laugh

We thought we would give you all a laugh today and show you a video we done while at the townhouse. We were a little bored at times……are you kidding me we were so bored I was calling Jennifer plywood, and yes I know plywood is a “board” So what better to do when were tired of looking at each other than to video one another. I think we better keep our day job, ha! ha!

The real reason I’m showing these videos is so you will be so proud of us when we get better at the videos, we can only improve!

Enjoy!

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It has now been one month since the transplant, and I have not quite adjusted to the new routine of labs twice a week and the piles of medicine that I take everyday. I’m not really complaining, but the amount of steroids I’m on makes me sweat constantly. Poor Jason may end up with pneumonia before they drop the dosage of the meds. I stay hot all day and sweat all night it is really driving me nuts! One of the other wonders of steroids is that I stay hungry or think I am hungry all the time! Ugh!! I still will take the meds over dialysis any day, but this is just a thing that makes me a little crazy. Jason is still working from home, mainly to keep an eye on me and help me when needed. I have not gone back to work either, so we are most definitely having some quality time together (and yes I’m rolling my eyes). I miss getting dressed and going out of the house everyday, so I keep coming up with lame excuses to leave the house. I’m not sure if I have been released to drive or not. That was a detail the Dr didn’t mention, and I didn’t ask. Today I was able to go by the shop for the first time to see Niky for her birthday and to check on everybody.  I feel like something is missing in me not being up there. I can’t believe it is soon to be 8 years since we opened the salon.

Jason and I have been working on setting up the nonprofit, and it is so much work. Bless Jason’s heart he is so detail oriented and I am so not. I’m pretty sure I am driving him to distraction. I am all about doing stuff, but planning I’m not so good about, and he is OCD about details and planning. I’m sure he wonders how on earth he ended up with me sometimes. Remember I’m the free spirt and he is the nerd! I’m not one you would list as logistically gifted. Jason’s middle initial is L and on his birth certificate it says Lane, but I think they made a mistake and his real name is Jason Logistics Borders. He is all about details and and I’m all about details too, the details of planning a party! Don’t we need a party? Don’t all organizations have a party, he ! he!. I’m all about having fun! Don’t get me wrong Jason likes to have fun too, but he has WAY too much of a serious side and I mean WAY too much. Well maybe not WAY too much but quite a bit more than I do, which is a good thing because if we were both free spirits…..well I won’t even go there.

I think the meds I’m on keeps my mind jumping from one project to another, so I know my writing is most likely crazy too. I’m trying to drink around 70 oz. of water a day, which is not the easiest thing in the world. Jason helps by asking me 40 times a day to be sure I’m drinking enough. I feel like I am going to float away with all the water I’m trying to drink.

Our good friends Steve and Rita had us over for dinner tonight. Steve cooked stir fry chicken and the best lettuce wraps you have ever eaten. Look out P.F Chang’s Steve has you  beat with his lettuce wraps. I think Jason was happy to know Steve did not fix noodles LOL!  I have got to get his recipe because they were scrumptious.

I’m really looking forward to tomorrow because I’m having lunch with my Daddy. I enjoy spending time with him for many reasons, but he always makes me feel good about myself. He is such an encourager and always knows exactly what to say to make me feel great!

live from the crazy farm,

jenn

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Today I would like to give you an update on where Jennifer and I are with the nonprofit 2givelife Network. As we have shared in earlier post we are in the developing stages of starting a nonprofit organization to promote organ donation, create awareness of Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD), educate communities of the causes of kidney disease and to eventually assist those who are dealing with CKD. Jennifer and I have experienced the highs and lows of CKD. We have experienced life with dialysis treatments and transplants with having health insurance and  without health insurance, and  are fully aware of the financial expense in both cases. So a long-term goal would be to assist patients also.

Starting a nonprofit may seem like a simple project, let me tell you it is not. LOL! It may have something to do with my type A personality or the fact that Jennifer tells me I am OCD! Whatever the reason, it’s way  more complicated than I originally thought, but I’m making progress thanks to all the smart people I have bumped my ideas off of .

We have about another week or two before we will be ready to file with the state of Alabama and the IRS. We still have several things that God will have to provide to help meet our milestone. We want to be up and running in April because April is Organ Donation Awareness Month. However we want to still continue promoting organ donation and awareness of CKD while we work through the logistics of the nonprofit. We still want to bring other patient’s stories to you and hope to share them with you soon. I am convinced the only way we will make a difference is to share real life experiences with as many people as we can. Nobody knows unless we tell them! Jennifer and I had people contact us wanting to know how they could go about being tested for a match for someone needing a kidney Why?  Because the blog raised enough awareness to stir their heart to do so.

I want to share a few facts about individuals who are waiting on a kidney. All the information I’m about to share is from the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network. As of 8:30 pm this evening 90,995 individuals in the United States are waiting on a kidney.  To keep from overwhelming you I will only share information from the state of Alabama.

On February 17th  2012 the following information was reported.

3,386 individuals in the state of Alabama were on the waiting list to receive a Kidney.

493 of the individuals on the waiting list have had a previous kidney transplant.

935 are on the list due to high blood pressure.

1687 are males and 1519 or females

The age range of the individuals:

1  to 10 years : 5      11 to 17 years : 17     18 to 34 years: 347     35 to 49 years: 1099      50 to 64 years : 1502      65 + : 416

By the individuals blood type:

Tpye-O  1736         Type-A 885             Type- B 4      Type-AB  zero

Below are the number of people waiting on the transplant list by years:

5 or more years: 750           3 to 5 years: 761                           2 to 3 years: 600           1 to 2 years: 638

6 months to 1 year: 313       90 days to 6 months: 186          30 to 90 days: 109        last 30 days: 29

I hope you see why Jennifer and I have such a passion to make 2givelife Network a success. Please continue to pray and follow us as we do our very best to make a difference in CKD and organ donation.

Pressing on,

Jason

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My personality is to look for ways to serve others, but often I find myself  asking  what do others think my motivation is. Do you ever ask yourself those type questions? For me, I think I may spend too much time questioning myself and not enough time focusing on what my spirit is leading me to do. Don’t get me wrong, I think a certain amount of questioning your motive is good and will help keep you in check as long as we don’t let it get in the way of doing something great for someone else. Today I want to share about how I have become motivated to seek out others’ needs before mine. But before I do I need you to give me the nod that you will be open-minded and not judge me or think I’m seeking any ” ‘AT A BOYS” from anyone. I simply want to see more people putting others first. Just think about it, if we sought to put others first then no one would be last.

I think the first thing I had to do was make a conscious effort to make a change. To remove selfishness from my existence was not easy nor inviting to my human nature. I started many years ago reading a Proverb a day. There are 30 chapters in the book of Proverbs and if you read one a day then you will read the whole book in one month. I do this each month, I can’t tell you how many times I have read the book of Proverbs and each month I learn something new. It has amazed me how the content of what chapter I’m reading on a particular day will relate to my day or to someone I come in contact with. Through reading Proverbs I have become aware of  just how important it is to seek wisdom, knowledge, and understanding. A great book to read in conjunction with reading Proverbs is Be Wise by Warren Wiersbe . I also began to study what it meant to be humble. Humility is not something we are born with nor is it easy to conquer. It’s not something I think I will ever master but rather have to pursue continually. I had to look at every situation in my life that made me irritable and tell my self….. “get over yourself; life is not about you”. Now I’m not saying  this was easy nor am I saying it is easy today. Once I became able to take every situation in my  life whether good or bad and convince myself life is not about me but about others, life became less stressful. One thing humility does for me is allows me to look at a circumstance in a broader view.

Think about a time in your life where someone else has done something to hurt you or make you very angry. How did you handle the situation? Did your response have a negative effect on others? Let me explain. Do you remember the other day I posted about a lady screaming at the nurse? Her response had a negative effect on about 35 or 40 people. Who do you think she was worried about the most? Where was humility? It made me think back a few months ago when Jennifer and I was sitting in that very same waiting area. This was a large area because three different clinics use this same waiting area. One of Jennifer’s doctors offices made an honest mistake and scheduled us an appointment with the wrong doctor. We left Jacksonville early that morning to be in Birmingham to get labs done by 7:30 am and then to the doctors visits. We sat in the waiting area outside doctor’s office until around 12:30 until we were the only two people left. Then a nurse asked us if we were waiting on someone and we said the doctor. The nurse asked for Jennifer’s name and said I will be right back. When she came back she said I’m sorry but we have misplaced your chart and did not realize you had not been seen. So they got us back as the doctor was leaving for lunch by seconds. That is when we found out we were not even supposed to be there to see this particular doctor. He was so kind while he explained to us he did not need to see Jennifer and did not know why Jennifer was referred to him. We laugh about what he said that day when he said I will not charge you for this visit. Now we had several choices to make in reaction to the situation. We had left Jacksonville at 6:00am for Jennifer to get “stuck” by a needle and have the opportunity to lounge in the luxurious seating at the Kirkland Clinic for nearly five hours.LOL!  We chose to be apologetic to the doctors and nurses because they felt so bad for us. We told them not to worry because we knew it was simply an honest mistake. We hoped to help their feelings during a time when we were the ones who had an inconvenience, or did we? I think we had an opportunity to show humility to someone else. So it depends on how you look at situations. Are they inconveniences or opportunities? If you stop and think about it 99% of the time they will always be opportunities.

Let me leave you with a quote I heard someone say years ago. “Do you go out into the world to serve or be served” The gentleman used this quote when he was telling a story of a waitress. When you go to a restaurant are you going there to serve or be served? For me as a follower of Christ its very simple, it is to serve. No mater what our service is like with our waitress or waiters for Jennifer and I the tips are the same. We are there to serve not be served. We have no clue what is going on in their life. We have no clue if the person before us was rude to them, but really none of that maters if your motive is to seve and not be served. If you are looking for opportunities and not inconveniences.

Tomorrow’s post will bring you up to date with where we are with the non-profit. This is a very complex project and we covet your prayers.

Pressing on,

Jason

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