Reblogged from: http://warriorlifestyle.org
When Warriors Connect – Photo Session with Michael with 8×10 Proofs
July 19, 2017
When warriors connect and collaborate creatively it’s truly an amazing thing. The timing of this shoot couldn’t have come at the perfect time as Michael Anthony Hermogeno with 8×10 Proofs prepares for a kidney transplant next month and I was in in Los Angeles visiting family. Also as I experienced a recent scare and just got discharged from the hospital I’m thankful to have these photos to remember really how strong I am and that I will keep overcoming as I’ve overcome so much already and have the scars to prove it. He wanted to get as many photo shoots done and I’m happy to be apart of a project he was starting to feature the realities of a dialysis patient and the scars you don’t see behind the clothes we wear.
Dialysis warriors like Maribel are perfect examples that while we may look healthy on the outside, there is a list of pains that we endure on the inside. We can cover the scars on our bodies, but the emotional scars are a whole other battle. We can work to look good, but working to feel good takes so much more effort.
Please check off the donor box on your license. Be a donor, save a life. ~Michael Anthony Hermogeno
Read More about Michael’s story and donate to his kidney fund as he gets ready for his kidney transplant on August 9, 2017
Also keep him in mind for your professional photography needs: 8 x 10 Proofs
Though these scars are not just a reflection of my kidney failure it also represents all that has come with over a decade fighting for my life. All the different life-sustaining dialysis treatments, a kidney transplant, valley fever which many of my scars I bare are from, to my spine, chest collar-bone, shoulder and hip. This started with a tiny spore that I breathed in and went into my lungs and invaded my body and almost cost my life and till this day I fight kidney failure along with the valley fever, a leaky heart valve and pulmonary hypertension.
Out of Maribel’s Kidney Story birthed this blog which is an accumulation of what l fight for everyday and at the same time have opportunities to collaborate with other creatives and when they are warriors too that is even more special because what is created out of these types of collaborations is truly shown in its finish product. This is my vision for taking the next steps with Warrior LifeStyle blog. At the same time I have these amazing professional photos that will go so well with some of these goals including a few projects I’ve had on hold like the Maribel’s Kidney Story eBook that I promise is close to completion along with the YouTube channeland Warrior Life & Style Store.
I started out with so many plans and organized timelines as best I can with lots of anticipation of stability in health but of course my health and some personal matters had its way and I did my best to battle it out. Continuing to balance the best I can but as things worsened I knew something more was happening than the typical aches and pains. I was recently treated for many issues from infection in my gallbladder which they almost thought they needed to remove but thankfully caught in time. They drained a liter of fluid as I started to accumulate fluid in my tummy. They did numerous test to rule out valley fever and make sure the chronic lower back pain I’ve been feeling hasn’t resurfaced in that area.
My years on dialysis has made healing harder and the frailty of my condition has made me lose important muscle mass and all my body symptoms are starting to be effected. Which has included my heart and my lungs and unfortunately had to come home to oxygen support yet again. Thankful that the last test they did which was a full body scan shown no active valley fever and the inflammation in my lower back is from arthritis. I hate to say but I take arthritis over valley fever any day because that I can rehab with physical therapy and I can remain on the kidney transplant list.
My kidney specialist who has overseen me through most of my kidney disease and valley fever fight and is optimistic about what another gift of life/ kidney transplant could change a lot of the frailty issues that I’m having. Where I would have the necessary balance to build up muscle mass again and get my whole body systems back in shape and working in unity.
So just like Michael “Kidney hustled” as he called it; literally he went on a search for a live donor vigilantly as the doctors predicted that with his heart condition he would only be able to last on dialysis for three years. He was on the news, he had signs that a kidney was needed on his truck, and he shared his journey on social media while he continued his photography business and raising up his two young daughters. This is exactly what I need to do because I have so much to fight for and I will use all my platforms when it comes to my websites and all that God has put upon my heart. This is just utilizing what I do have and able to do and that is mainly using my voice.
This is just a glimpse of my fight and why I think photos are an important element to telling the story. You really don’t know what people are fighting. Even for my fellow kidney warrior Michael you would never know what he is going through. We still strive and we got to hustle even harder in life even for the simple things. There’s lots of sacrifices behind the scenes that you will not see but I know like many others fighting chronic life threatening diseases and illnesses we fight for some type of normalcy.
We want to be seen for who we are and not the disease but there is an obligation to share because it’s the only way to bring awareness and to hopefully bring necessary change to our own situations as well as others.
As I begin the kidney hustle if you would like to be tested please fill living donor questionnaire:
UC Davis (please specify specific recipient) or call 916-734-2307
Here are the beautiful photos that I’ve been waiting to share and featuring my new hair cut and look. Thank you to my sister Maritess for the styling and my Goddaughter for doing my makeup.