16th Annual Essay Contest

All people who have kidney disease are invited to enter!

2018-Essay-Contest-Kidney-Disease

2018 Theme: “Who inspires, encourages or educates you on how to live well with kidney disease?”

RSN’s Annual Patient Essay Contest provides an outstanding opportunity for people who have chronic kidney disease (CKD), including people on dialysis and kidney transplant recipients, to make a valuable contribution to society by expressing their ideas, views, and most importantly, hope. This year, the theme asks the writers to “Tell us about someone (Doctor, Nurse, Family member, Friend, Patient, Pet) who has inspired, encourage or educated you on how to live well with kidney disease.”  All submissions must be written by someone who has been diagnosed with CKD.”

“This contest continues to prove that resilience is alive and well in the kidney community,” says Lori Hartwell, RSN’s founder and president, who was diagnosed with kidney disease in 1968. Hartwell is the author of Chronically Happy: Joyful Living in Spite of Chronic Illness, and the host of the KidneyTalk podcast. “People who have kidney disease know the value of sharing their experiences and inspiring their peers.” She added, “These stories provide hope for people who learn how to manage their disease and remain hopeful throughout their journey.”

Last year’s first place winner Brad Chaffee said, “When I saw the topic, it moved me to write. This essay was from my heart and the essay contest gave me an opportunity tell my story.”

Deborah Ramsey, who tied for second place last year, said, “I feel so overwhelming blessed that I was able to share my story with anyone and everyone! I just want to encourage those who are going through similar experiences that THERE IS HOPE!”

1st, 2nd and 3rd place winners receive cash prizes. Winning essays and will be published online and in RSN’s Live&Give magazine. First Prize: $500, Second Prize: $300, Third Prize: $100. Enter the contest today!

All entries must be postmarked or received by 12:00 PM (PT) on August 10, 2018.

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Thanks to Our 2018 Corporate Partners

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FRESENIUS MEDICAL CARE
Keryx
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U.S. Renal Care

Winners of the 15th annual essay contest:

living kidney disease - 15th annual essay contest

Making Lemonade Out of Lemons – 1st Place Winner 15th Annual Essay Contest

“I’m afraid it’s time for your husband to start dialysis!”, the doctor declared. The room fell silent as the news percolated in our heads....
Pregnancy and kidney disease

Life or Death – 2nd Place Winner (Tie) 15th annual essay contest

Why am I am so nauseous? Why am I so tired? Why am I so dizzy? In October of 1979 I continued to ask...
why get a kidney transplant

Squirming Toward My New Normal – 2nd Place Winner (Tie) 15th annual essay contest

A chance meeting in a random hallway led to changes. Echoes of conversations filled my mind. “You should opt to get yourself back on the...
LEARNING ALL ABOUT KIDNEYS

Tony’s Kidney – 3rd Place Winner 15th Annual Essay Contest

I am Tony’s kidney, and this is my story. I have a twin brother. Each of us is the size of a fist, and...
losing weight for a kidney transplant

Deciding I Could Lose Weight – Presidents Pick 15th Annual Essay Contest

Nobody asks for end-stage renal disease. I’m still not even sure what started the process of IgA nephropathy I was diagnosed with a few...
depression and kidney disease

Just Keep Moving – 15th Annual Essay Contest Honorable Mention

At an early age, I was diagnosed with kidney disease. Nothing says “awkward childhood” quite like edema, dialysis catheters, and depression. In addition, nothing...
understanding the renal diet

Take It with a Grain of Mrs. Dash! – Honorable Mention 15th Annual Essay...

“How does your food taste?” A simple question to most. A life-changing question to me. “Terrible” I said with tears in my eyes. Somebody...
Turning Point

Turning Point – Honorable Mention 15th Annual Essay Contest

The turning point of my life occurred during my junior year of high school. I had just come off of an amazing weekend of...
coping with kidney disease

Prepare For the Best – Honorable Mention 15th Annual Essay Contest

“This storm doesn’t appear to be a major one, but you should always prepare for the worst,” the weatherman chirped animatedly. I groaned, rolled...
Positive Kidney Living

Positive Kidney Living – Honorable Mention 15th Annual Essay Contest

For months, while living in the shadows of renal failure, I was petrified. Petrified of getting extremely sick, of potential dialysis, of the possibility...
positive attitude kidney disease chronic illness

Keep Smilin’ – Honorable Mention 15th Annual Essay Contest

Dear Positivity, I have a confession to make to you Positivity: I want to be you. People always said I was you, because I would flash...

Read Past Essays

Get the Essay Collection Book

Book of Essays - Renal Support Network

RSN’s book of essays “Hope, Inspiration & Wisdom: A Treasury of Thoughts on Coping with Kidney Disease” is available for purchase.
Order the Printed Book for $14.95 or the Kindle Book for $6.99

Popular Past Essays

1st Place Winner, 14th Annual Essay Contest

Note to Self – 1st Place Winner, 14th Annual Essay Contest

They say hindsight has 20/20 vision. “If I knew then what I know now,” we say, assuming we would make “better” decisions. I am...
Silver Linings - 2nd Place Winner, 14th Annual Essay Contest

Silver Linings – 2nd Place Winner, 14th Annual Essay Contest

I remember the day I got acquainted with chronic kidney disease, in May of 1998, at the tender age of ten. I remember waking...
3rd Place Winner, 14th Annual Essay Contest - I Never Know A Kindy Was More Than A Bean 2016 Essay Contest

I Never Knew a Kidney Was More Than a Bean! – 14th Annual Essay...

When I was a child and heard the word kidney, I always thought of the bean.  You know the one I mean. The kind...

President's Picks

losing weight for a kidney transplant

Deciding I Could Lose Weight – Presidents Pick 15th Annual Essay Contest

Nobody asks for end-stage renal disease. I’m still not even sure what started the process of IgA nephropathy I was diagnosed with a few...
Essay President's Pick, 14th Annual Essay Contest

The Discombobulated, Yet “Totally Unfiltered, Kidney-Shaped Childhood” – Essay President’s Pick, 14th Annual Essay...

An atom or two slothed off and joined a rival organ. The glomeruli may have had an issue with their nephron overlord and deserted...