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The importance of being a champion

When the World Kidney Day team contacted me a few months ago, I was stunned. They wanted me to be a World Kidney Day champion! As a Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) patient I understood the importance of the task very well, and when the ISN Blog asked me to write something I knew perfectly what I wanted to tell.

At the beginning of my diagnosis, I was not a typical CKD patient. I was not undernourished (years of rugby), but the renal diet my hospital had chosen was not for me. Nobody knew what to do with my nutrition. And rather than sit still, I just started to use my language skills and the Internet to find solutions – and I found lots of useful material.

My wife Sara and I thought that these materials would come in useful to many other patients, and that all the work I had done for myself could be useful for other people. And so my blog was born.

Throughout my adventure with the blog, I have met people from which I learned a lot. I have suffered because they suffer. When someone comes to you with their problems, most of the time, all you can do is listen and I know that is a lot. Sometimes, as with everything, it makes you want to throw in the towel, because you feel out of your depth. In those moments, I remember my father survived a cancer. I have a friend of my age fighting breast cancer. You realize that you have no right to give up. I feel compelled to live and help others live. Sounds hippie, I know, but I’m sure the chronic patients will understand it perfectly.

And that’s the importance of being a champion, a model and help. Sometimes just be someone who shares a disease and who knows what others are going through, and talking about it in a blog – in my case in order to be accessible to others.

I have to thank other bloggers who encouraged me to take the plunge and who do an excellent job with their blogs, helping and encouraging other patients. I would not exist without them. Now, thanks to the ISN blog (without abandoning my blog), I have the opportunity to give the patient perspective during World Kidney Day 2014. I hope not to disappoint you. See you on the streets on March 13, 2014.

Follow my blog Comer por un rinon HERE.

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