Being a wife and mother of two has made Nicole Coronado a strong woman, able to take on things she didn’t see possible.
Coronado and her husband Efrain were high-school sweethearts far before he was diagnosed with kidney failure.
They have been awaiting a transplant on the University of California, Los Angeles waiting list since 2011, but they were recently placed on the University of California, San Diego waiting list.
The UCLA waiting list that the Coronados have been a part of for five years takes up to 10 years for a transplant, while the UC San Diego waiting list can happen within a year, she said.
Coronado hopes that her husband will get the transplant from UCLA because they have a lot of family there and none in San Diego. She has already been hard at work preparing for the day he is allowed a kidney transplant.
“I’m going to do bake sales, I have friends that are offering. [Efrain] comes from a big Hispanic family and my sister in laws will be helping me fundraise. We are just getting prepared for that,” Coronado said.
Coronado works a full-time job all while taking care of her children and her husband. When she first found out about her husband’s kidney failure, she couldn’t believe it.
“I was very emotional, I was just like, ‘It can’t happen to my family, like why is this happening?’ so I was just trying to stay positive as much as I can for him,” said Coronado. “At the time, I was like, ‘What’s going to happen?’ I didn’t even know what dialysis was, and that he could still do that and live.”
She now tries to do as much as possible to stay positive and strong for her family.
High blood pressure is one of the leading causes of kidney failure, so Coronado needs to make sure her husband’s blood pressure is maintained, take him to his weekly doctor visits and keep him as healthy as can be.
“With me working, I also work for him,” she said “I do all of his dialysis for him, I hook him up to make sure that he doesn’t get any bacteria because he could get Peritonitis.”
Coronado’s husband is kept on dialysis but can acquire Peritonitis, which is a bad infection that happens when a person is placed on dialysis.
“So I have to be very careful that he doesn’t get any bacteria, it’s a long process,” added Coronado.
Coronado and her husband have been together for 14 years. At 16 she had her oldest daughter, who is now 13 years old. They were married a few months after they found out about her husband’s kidney failure.
Just like Coronado, her daughter has followed in her footsteps by remaining as strong and positive as her mother.
“My daughter doesn’t really show it, she tries to not let it get to her,” said Coronado. “She is pretty positive about it. It was heartbreaking at first for her, she cried and cried. She was worried about him.”
As for her younger son, she says he doesn’t really know what is going on.
“He knows his daddy’s sick, and he will try to help by putting his mask on. He takes a little cord and connects it for him,” said Coronado.
Dealing with this ordeal can be tough on many families, and the Coronados are just one of many families who go through unimaginable lengths to care and stay positive for their loved ones.
“It was really hard for me, I think he is the most positive one, but I try to keep it together so he doesn’t know,” said Coronado. “Be the best support that you can be, because if you’re not showing you’re positive, then that person might want to give up.”
Donations toward Efrain’s Kidney Transplant Fund can be made on his GoFundMe page at https://www.gofundme.com/2su9wjw.