I have had the great opportunity to meet with Mrs. Michelle Woods monthly for the past nine years and annually when she conducts her home visit. She is a dedicated nurse who is strict with compliance and quick to laugh. She has always been thorough with my monthly evaluations but never intimidating. Rather she makes me feel comfortable and shows that she is truly concerned for my health.
She has watched my now 16 year old son and 11 year old daughter grow up. In the summers I bring them along with me on ninety mile drive from my home in East Lansing to the Henry Ford Hospital Greenfield Health Systems Home Dialysis Center in Detroit. She and the staff at Greenfield Health are always happy to see them.
I have been on dialysis now for 15 years and have used every modality available. I have dialyzed at three different centers within Michigan-one private, one associated with a university hospital and my current center. I have met a number of kind and competent nurses throughout my journey. Michelle stands out to me because of her deep concern for my wellbeing and definitely her sense of humor. It is always good to laugh in a dialysis center.
Michelle is always interested in my ideas on how to encourage more traditional dialysis patients to try and stick with home modalities. Her concern for kidney patients doesn't stop when she hangs up her clinical clothes. For a number of years she has sponsored my Riverdudes Fundraising Team for the National Kidney Foundation of Michigan. She also regularly walks in the Annual NKFM Detroit Zoo Walk.
For all that she does for me and all the patients she sees at the Henry Ford Home Dialysis Center, it is my pleasure and honor to nominate Michelle Woods to be a NxStage Nurse Hero.
In 2010, to celebrate my tenth year of a wonderful life on dialysis I sort of got in shape and canoed 225 miles with the Grand River Expedition 2010. It was an incredible journey that couldn't have happened without my family and many dear friends.
I have been on dialysis since 2001 and have used every form of dialysis currently available in search of the best outcome and the best life. I have done in-center hemodialysis, at home hemodialysis with a traditional dialysis machine, peritoneal dialysis and finally, NxStage's System One home hemodialysis machine. I have had two kidney transplants, one from my beautiful wife and another because a thoughtful motorcyclist had checked the donate organs line on his license. For me, the technology for a successful transplant does not exist for my disease. I remain open and optimistic about wearable and implantable artificial kidneys.
Since I started my first blog, Tasty Kidney Pie, in 2001, I have tried to, and hope to continue to, inspire dialysis patients and others living with chronic illnesses to get outdoors and live an active and fruitful life.
Since 2001, The Riverdudes, my National Kidney Foundation of Michigan Walk Team has raised $78,000.
I currently spend my time writing, raising my children, snuggling with my wife, getting outside and staying active, and hopefully inspiring others along the way.