Needles, Waiting, And Hope

Transfer Needle


[The 20th of every month, I give an update of how I’m doing after my kidney transplant.  Today marks the 7th month]

I was told I had to come to the hospital to get a biopsy done.  Apparently, my creatinine level had reached 1.9 and the transplant team was freaking out.  If you have never had a kidney biopsy done, here is what happened the last time I got a biopsy done:


I had to lay on my stomach (fully awake) while the doctor stuck a needle in my back.  This needle, literally, is the biggest needle I have ever seen.  No, for real, this needle was obnoxiously large.  The doctor numbed the area with a shot of novocane before the sticking began.  I had to stay awake because I had to hold my breath to keep my kidneys from moving.

He stuck me through my back into my kidney to extract kidney tissue so it can be tested.  He did this four times.  I was taken by wheelchair back to my hospital room.  I couldn’t walk for about a day and had episodes of nausea and dizziness from the pain.

So fast forward 5 years and the transplant team and surgeon wanted to do this again!


My wife and I got to the hospital, we signed in and waited in a short term hospital room until the liason came to talk to us and take me for the biopsy.  We had to be there by 7:30am, biopsy was scheduled for 8am.  So we waited…and waited…and waited…anyone…Bueller?

My Nephrologist came in about 11:15am.  He did not know I was in the hospital, or that I was scheduled for a procedure.  He told us to sit tight and he was going to investigate.  By this point, I am bouncing off the walls in the room and, truth be told, probably getting on my wife’s nerves.  I’m live twittering about what is going on, I’m hiding in the closet thinking about scaring the nurse when she comes back into the  room, and I’m trying to convince Stephanie to grab as much medical supplies as we can and spankin’ escape.

At 11:40am, my Nephrologist comes back and tells us my creatinine had come down to 1.7, my BK titers had gone from 8 million down to 21,000, and he said we could go home.  Can I get a what what!  He said instead of poking the new kidney, he instructed the transplant team to increase my medications.

At 12:30pm, the nurse came in the room (no, I did not scare her.  She was actually very nice.) with my discharge paperwork and we left immediately!


After that adventure, I had a bout with pollen-induced allergies for about a week.  Since I’m immunosuppressed, it was a long week, thank God for orange juice and cough drops.

What I learned from this experience is:

  1. Waiting is hard, and we don’t always feel like waiting.  Waiting shows us how much we do not have control over what we are waiting for, most times it is depending on something or someone else.  But what we can choose to have hope.  That, we can control.
  2. Waiting can not only foster hope, but imagination and creativity.  While we wait, we can create and dream.
  3. I can fit my 6 foot 4 in frame into a hospital closet if ever the need arises.  You laugh, but you never know when that could come in handy.

Thank you so much for reading, take care and may peace be with you, may peace be multiplied.

Tags from the story


  • That is so awesome, Jermaine! I’m so happy for you and Stephanie! My sister-in-law had 2 liver transplants, so I know how much stress it can cause and how much of your life it can consume. Organ donation is so important. I hope everyone who reads your post will check that donor box on their drivers license. 🙂

    Thanks for taking us on the journey with you. It’s an awesome testimony of hope. 🙂

  • so glad you didn’t have to go through the biopsy again, Jermaine! it is hard to wait- but often good things come to those who do (i.e. your beautiful wife and daughter-to-be!) 🙂

    • Koster, what’s up! They do say good things happen to the waiting bunch, but it’s hard to find that good while waiting. Maybe that is the space where we learn. Thanks for reading and commenting!

  • Jermaine,

    I am so happy for you. You have been a real inspiration, and I enjoy reading your blog. I am praying for your health and strength. I look at you and how you are doing, and I know that God works miracles, and has used you to show me to be still, and know that he is in the healing business. 🙂

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