Lamont Daniels: I walked a lot. I walked everywhere. I walked to the grocery store, to do my laundry; I even walked my dog every day. I have a morning routine just to exercise or just to clear my mind. But on this particular day of January of 2016, I remember waking up with a very bad headache. I thought to myself, “Lamont, it’s a simple migraine. You’ll be ok. It’ll pass.” But when I got up, I felt like I was moving in slow motion, but I still decided to go for my morning walk. Walking at the park was so difficult. I was out of breath, and I was extremely tired. I thought to myself something is wrong. And I begin to get very afraid. I vaguely remember walking to my house. The only thing I remember is as I was approaching my house, everything around me was spinning and moments later, I passed out. Struggling to open my eyes, I see my little brother rushing over to me asking, ”Lamont? Lamont? Are you ok?” He then helped me into the house and sat me down. My mom came rushing over to me asking, “Lamont, what’s going on? Are you ok?” I couldn’t respond because I felt so sick. I had never felt so sick in my entire life. I was numb, I was nauseous, I was dizzy, and the headache that I had was worse. So my mom decided to act immediately and take me to the emergency room.
As I had got to the emergency room, the doctors immediately took my blood test and checked my pulse. As I sat in my hospital bed, I was thinking, “Lamont, it’s ok. It’s just a virus or cold. You’ll be fine.” Suddenly, the doctor came in. The look on his face seemed off. It was a look of concern and sadness. He then proceeded to tell me, “Lamont, I’m so sorry. But your kidneys have failed and you need dialysis right away or you will not make it.” My heart sank into my stomach. I thought to myself, “How could this have happened to me? Will I be ok? I’m a healthy, young man. This happened out of nowhere.” So I didn’t respond to the doctor. I just put my head down, trying to take everything in, but I didn’t blame God.
Adjusting to my new life on dialysis was so hard. I don’t know what was harder, the needles that are the size of nails, going to dialysis three times a week, or the draining effect of dialysis. I had to face reality that this was my new life. I would no longer be able to play sports, hang out with my friends, go out to eat with them, or simply talk to them just because of my dialysis schedule. I felt so lonely and isolated, but I didn’t blame God at all for this. In fact, I felt so sorry towards Him. You see, I’m a choir member, and being a choir member requires a lot of sacrifice and dedication. We attend practices two or maybe three times a week, we sing in worship services two times a week. And when I had got sick, I could no longer perform in the choir. I felt so horrible. I was thinking to myself, “Lamont, you’re so young. You miss hanging out with your friends. You miss attending classes, and you miss attending church activities.” I was so upset. I was at an all-time low in my life, but I still did not blame God.
People then began to ask me questions, “Lamont, if God loved you, why would He put you through such a hardship? Why would He put you through this trial? Why do you even go to that church?” And my response always is, “God owes me nothing and I owe Him everything. And even though God owes me nothing, He still wants to love me.” Through my faith, I have learned that God does not give us anything that we cannot handle. And yes, it’s true. I’m still here alive. Yes, I have kidney failure, but God still provides me the opportunities I need, granted that I have to be on dialysis. He’s given me a second chance to live, and with the strength that I have, I will use it to perform in choir and attend in worship services. I do not blame God at all for this circumstance that I am in, but I thank Him for allowing me to be here in spite of my circumstance. Because of Him, I’m here today telling you my story. Thank you very much.