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Los Angeles, California
I am 47 and thriving in Southern California. One day at a time.
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Thursday, January 5, 2012

the 3% girl [year of the monkey girl]

no this wasn't my final math grade, before i dropped it at the first opportunity.

[but it was pretty close]

in my medical career, or should i say, patient career of now 30 years, i have experienced more ups and downs than a bulimic's head over a toilet.

it is now clear that i am extremely sensitive to medications, procedures and surgeries. so i swing this loaded backpack of information onto my back, alongside my screeching monkey...and try to flourish under my burden of proof.

[hear no evil, speak no evil, speak no evil]
[born "year of the monkey"...you may be on my back, but you ain't breakin' it...]

self-coined the 3% girl in high school, as my kidneys slowly deteriorated; my blood pressure began to elevate and medication was the order of the day. a bittersweet sixteen, my doctor wanted to try an experimental drug that could manifest, in 3% of cases, as loss of taste. well, barely a month had passed before the only things my not-so innocent tongue could identify were hard boiled eggs and french fries with gravy....and pepper...lots and lots of pepper...go figure.

and such has been the trajectory of my renal career.

-a biopsy that removed liver tissue instead of kidney tissue.

-an outpatient biopsy with a rare chance of passing blood clots, became a bright pink, very bloody, very rare emergency that hospitalized me for 3 nights.

-being hospitalized twice for e-coli poisoning for 12 nights.

-waking up to allergic reactions both times, post transplant.

-being the one lone ranger that can't tolerate toxic prograf as her tonto.

-the girl whose cyclosporine level is always an anomaly. always below normal.

and tonight.

my stomach and intestinal area was so misshapen, so absurd looking, so perfectly placed as a pregnancy, with nervous glances and tallying fingers, we counted back days and considered running out for a test. in blackfoot, idaho. until kevin discovered this:

in 0.63% of cases, people on high amounts of cyclosporine suffer with stomach distention, swelling of the feet, ankles, calves and thighs, joint pain and cramping...

[what are the odds!?...apparently, less than 3%...]

check. check. check.

so stuff all this in the backpack, too.

because the little red haired girl is weak. she is strained. and there's a monkey ever taunting, ever tempting by her ear...

[monkey see, monkey do...]

but she's gonna bear this weight until april the 8th. and beyond.

for she wants to be the 3 % girl, after all.

the girl who had her kidney for 23 years.
the girl who has 83 days sober.
the girl who still has someone willing to hold her backback...
...and scream back at her monkey...

...whenever she wants...

...because he is still here...

[because, really. what were the odds?]

damn. she is proud to be a 3% girl.

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