This is really hard for me to share with everyone but I can't do this alone anymore.
I was born three months premature along with my twin, Kelsey. She was born with heart problems and I was born with a horseshoe kidney (both kidneys joined together to make one). As a child, I had minimal problems, mostly UTI's. But in the last few years, I've been having pain with my flanks. The doctors have not been able to pinpoint what was wrong and the pain has continued to become more severe after each episode. I do not have any warning that the pain is coming but I learned to deal with it. But now, it has become too much.
Last year, I visited a kidney specialist and he diagnosed me with Stage One Chronic Kidney Disease, (CKD 1). However, he could not identify why I was having the sudden pain that would occur. Last month, I couldn't take it any longer. I went to the emergency room and they found a kidney stone. A few days later, I went to the urologist and she suggested we medically place a stent from my urethra to my bladder. However, once we were in the operating room, she could see that my problems were far greater than what she had expected. She found blockage connected to the kidney and swelling enlarged to one side of the kidney.
She initially tried to find me a surgeon close to home but was unable. Because of the complexity of surgery, I need to travel to Rochester, MN to the Mayo Clinic. Although a date has not been set at this time, the doctor is trying to get me in as soon as possible. In the meantime, it is suggested that I take pain medication when needed. However, when I do so, I am unable to drive or work.
I am currently in AmeriCorps building Habitat houses. I receive a small stipend each month but it is not enough to keep up with the bills. I am concerned about being buried with medical bills that will feel like I can never pay. I still have to pay rent, a car payment, insurance and a phone bill as well.
I am in need of support to try and keep up with medical bills and with transportation, food and lodging while in Minnesota. At this time they are not sure how long I will need to recover just taking it one day at a time right now. I am excited to think of the day that I will not have sudden pain.
I appreciate all the love and support of my family and friends. This was kind of hard for me to talk about so thanks for caring.
Prayers, good vibes, happy thoughts, all welcomed.
P.S. If you would like to give and prefer to send a check, please contact me using the link below or text me so we make arrangements. Thanks!
- Louise Berthelsen
- Julie Kurfman
- Carra Gorby
- Dustin Schalue
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