My London Marathon 2017 Fundraising Testimonial

I was born with what my mum called a ‘dicky’ kidney. In ‘northern’ that means ‘something not quite right’. I was monitored closely for a bit until mum was told I was healthy and happy enough to go home. I would need regular iodine scans to check my kidney function throughout my childhood and as an adult I wouldn’t be able to booze it up like my mates – official doctor speak – and potentially if/when I were to become pregnant there could be complications. 

By the time I was 7/8 it was deemed that although my kidney function wasn’t improving, it wasn’t getting any worse and I no longer needed to take the regular trips to hospital. 
Fast forward 13 years. I properly boozed it up. Anyone that knows me will testify I was getting into clubs at 16/17 and I hit the university party lifestyle HARD. I was never particularly active and I ate terribly but that was fine because that’s what all uni students do right?

Turns out uni students with pre-existing kidney conditions should not drink like a fish. I had my first kidney infection Christmas 2012 and from there I spent 7-8 months in and out of hospital care. The kidney infections became chronic and every time I had to be admitted to hospital for intravenous antibiotics and pain management because my body just couldn’t fight the infection off. My boyfriend at the time would wake up in the middle of the night to me whimpering and racking with rigors, sweating so much the bed sheets would be soaked through. It was a pretty sexy time in my life clearly. One time I had severe complications after an investigative procedure that left my urine black (soz not soz for the overshare) and that landed me writhing in a hospital bed in the early hours of the morning whilst doctors frantically stuck needles in me to bring my fever down saying things like ‘it’s touch and go’. 

It was a pretty ropey time. And I’ll tell you as a 22 year old bubbly, driven, busy loudmouth the infections weren’t even the worst part. The weeks off work laid up on a urology ward, being too weak to walk a 100m, to watch your friends going off on holidays and going on nights out on social media, not being able to be with your boyfriend and bless the NHS, but having to eat hospital food morning, noon and night was maddening. I was lucky enough to have some right babes on the ward I was frequently admitted to, but I was always the youngest by at least 40 years.

Now fast forward again to 2016. I’ve changed my life massively. Running has become part of my DNA and I’ve gone from not being able to run for a bus to running half marathons and 30k distances in the UK and throughout Europe. I have to eat more balanced meals to support the amount I run – although I am a sucker for late night chicken nuggets – and as of today I haven’t drank alcohol in 12 weeks. All in all I appreciate the importance of listening to my body and looking after myself far more than I ever did in my early 20’s.

My kidney condition hasn’t gone anywhere. My last renogram in 2013 showed 32% functionality of my left kidney and 68% of my right. My right one is working overtime to pick up the slack so if I take my eye off the ball I still get kidney infections.

Fast forward for the last time to the present day. TODAY I am fundraising in aid of Guys & St Thomas’ Kidney Patients Association for the London Marathon 2017. ME. I AM RUNNING LONDON BLOODY MARATHON.

Guys & St Thomas’ Kidney Patients Association is a charity that funds social events in the dialysis units and organizes events like ‘The Transplant Games’ for adults and children. They also provide amenities like TV’s in the clinics and dialysis units. Now, I’ve never been to a dialysis unit  but I spent a long time in and out of urology wards and man are they DRRRYY so when I heard about GSTTKPA I was so excited to support them in their fundraising efforts.

I don’t know what the future holds for me and my battered left kidney. There is every possibility that if I continue to maintain a healthy lifestyle it won’t deteriorate any further and if/when I have kids everything will go smoothly and we’ll all live happily ever after (in a mansion, with a butler and Jason Momoa as my husband).

But if you had a condition, family history or an awareness that meant you could potentially need the services of an amazing charity like Guys & St Thomas’ Kidney Patients Association one day, I reckon you’d do the same as me right now. You’d badger your friends and family, you’d spam Facebook, you would abuse Twitter and ultimately annoy the hell out of everyone, but hey, small price to pay for the impact that my efforts can make to someone’s bigger picture. Maybe my bigger picture one day.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read my testimonial. The link to my Virgin Money fundraising page is below and genuinely genuinely GENUINELY any amount you can afford to donate would be greatly appreciated. Keep your eye out on my various social media’s because I have so much activity planned there will be tons of opportunities to get involved, attend events and win some goodies!

DONATE --> Tabby's London Marathon Fundraising Page 2017 <-- DONATE

Until next time . . . Take Heart x 


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