Everyone is fighting a battle you know nothing about...
My name is Morag May-Allen. I'm 25 years old. I married my husband, Curtis, in 2015 and later that year, we bought our first house together. In April 2016, I found out I was going to have a baby. It was perfect.
In September 2016, Curt got a headache. This was not groundbreaking news - headaches are common, so he ignored it. After a few weeks, it hadn't gone away. Being the man that he is, Curt didn't bother going to the doctors, but I was fed up of him complaining and falling asleep all the time, so I made him book an appointment at the GP. The doctor took some bloods and when the tests came back, they said Curt needed to go to hospital right away. I was five months pregnant at the time so even little things like not having any custard in the house turned me into a stressed out psychopath, so you can imagine what I was like.
The day after that, Curt was in hospital. He'd had a bunch of tests and scans etc etc and called me to say he needed picking up as he was being discharged. I remember it so clearly because I didn't have any money for parking and had to run from the car to the cafe in the hospital to buy a muffin just to get change, and run back again so I wouldn't get a ticket, all in the space of 15 minutes. Remember when I said I was five months pregnant? Yeah, that wasn't fun.
So I got the parking sorted and went up to the ward to then be told by some Nurse I could not see Curt because it wasn't visiting hours, so I had to wait in the family room. It sent me over the edge. I burst into tears and stormed off. About five minutes later that Nurse came and found me hyperventilating into a tissue. She gave me a hug and said: "Is it because I asked you to leave the ward?" Bless her heart - she listened to me ramble on for the next 10 minutes (much like you lovely people have, but bear with me - there's a point) about the muffin and the pregnancy fat and the terrifying drive on the M1, and made me feel better. Thank god for Nurses.
Anyway, Curt was diagnosed with IGA Nephropathy and transferred to the Renal Clinic. His kidneys were failing and he was going to need a transplant within the next three years. Less perfect.
Our daughter was born in December 2016. Two weeks later, we found out Curt's kidneys had failed completely and he was going to need dialysis. He was fitted for a Peritoneal Catheter and trained on how to dialyse at home. That's when pdbelts.co.uk was born. I started making support belts for people on Peritoneal Dialysis to help them carry on with their daily lives. Curt is a keen golfer, and the clip belts that are common in the UK didn't provide enough support for sports, so I wanted to make something sturdier.
When I set up online, I wanted to include a blog like this as a sort of message board / support group for people in the same situation. I've found this experience can be quite lonely and I don't think it needs to be. My house has been turned into a hospital, my dog is banned from the upstairs, and I can't go to bed whenever I want because there's not room for me in the damn thing until the machine keeping my husband alive has been fully set up. I think people going through this need to know that they aren't alone, so here it is! If you or someone you love is going through something similar to this, I want to know about it! Tell me your story, tell me how you're feeling.
Everyone is fighting a battle you know nothing about. Be kind, always.