Carl, this dreadful news must have hit you hard, even though your body was probably sending you messages for some time. I am so grateful the doctor caught it before a heart attack or some other dastardly event. You are a smart fellow and know how to research and ask questions and seek information so that you can take as complete control as possible.
The trick now is to feel that you are not a victim, but a warrior taking on a challenge of a lifetime. Each day, each moment, you have things to do to help correct the malfunction of your kidneys. It is very easy to fall into a depression, I did, and get help with that immediately. Don't think it will go away with positive self-talk. Depression is far more insidious than that.
I/we am/are with you, dear friend, able and willing to read whatever you feel like pumping into the computer. We are survivors. More importantly, we are the thrivers of the world. We flourish in the face of illness, disaster, misfortune. Life is more than our illness.
It is a good idea to get help with panic attacks. It usually takes only short term care to get over them, but it does require a skilled practitioner.
4 hours ago
Thanks, everyone, for all your words of support. It means a lot to me. I know I can come here and find a receptive ear when needed.
Joan, my panic attacks seem to be under control now that my kidneys are stabilized. I'm definitely feeling calmer and more at ease. Knowing what the problem is and having it taken care of is half the battle, physically and mentally.
3 hours ago
Well, despite my vow to embrace turning 50 years old last month, it has hit me like a ton of bricks. lol While recuperating, I have only been leaving the house to get food and supplies or to keep my numerous doctor's appointments. Yesterday, I went to the eye doctor. I'll be wearing glasses full-time now to correct vision problems I've been having. No big deal, though. I'm kind of looking forward to getting them in two weeks. I'll be able to read books again!