Bea Santiago, a dialysis patient, doesn't let her health condition put a limitation to how she wants to live her life.
The 29-year-old beauty queen recently basked in the sun, and enjoyed the waves of La Union.
Clad in a pair of black bikini, she wowed the netizens not just with her toned body but also with her beach accessory—a perm catheter (aka permcath or dialysis catheter), which, according to a medical dictionary, is "a long, flexible tube that is inserted into a vein most commonly in the neck, particularl the internal jugular vein."
Here's another "no filter" photo of the 2013 Miss International titleholder, who has been battling her disease with positivity.
Her caption read, "So aside from tearing up when I dipped my feet this afternoon and puked a lil bit [too full or too hot] I enjoyed this impromptu getaway. The humidity made me tired easily and made me drink more but hey...... my heart is grateful!"
Look, even the way she dresses makes no effort to hide the permcath.
This video was shot by her boyfriend Marc Nash.
And just because she is sick she can not have a normal life.
In fact, she still does her workouts even if they partly "damaged" her kidneys.
Her May 11 post on Instagram showed that even with her permcath, she did a deadlift, a weight training exercise where a loaded barbell or a bar is lifted off the ground to the level of the hips, then lowered to the ground.
She assured her followers, "Don't worry guys I can still kick as* and lift. In life, it’s either feel bad about your situation and cry, but for me? Thats not an option.
"Going through kidney failure and dialysis is very depressing and overwhelming, I cry myself to sleep sometimes because although I have many many amazing friends and a loving family, no one can really understand me. At some point I wanted to give up.......... [I went in deep] but I realized I’m Bea Santiago—a badass and my dogs needs their mom.
"Find what makes u happy even the most random and really weird. There are so many reasons not to give up. Your situation right now will not be your situation forever. LOVE YOURSELF AND BE PATIENT."
A concerned netizen asked, "…why do u have to do that strenuous exercise?"
Bea replied, "I'm actually really careful darling. I’m lifting light weights FYI. It looks heavy but its only 50 kilos. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not promoting anything negative."
In large caps, the former beauty queen underlined that being sick does not mean she has to look and like one.
"I'M JUST TIRED OF PEOPLE PICTURING ME AS A FRAGILE, VULNERABLE AND REALLY DEPRESSING ANNOYING SICK PERSON. WE’RE NOT LESS OF A PERSON AND I DO NOT SEE MYSELF AS A SICK VULNERABLE AND WEAK PERSON THEY WANT ME TO BELIEVE."
The good news is she is going to have her transplant soon.
This was the reason she used a permcath instead of an AVF or arteriovenous fistula, which is often surgically created for use in dialysis of people with severe kidney disease.
Replying to a comment, Bea said, "Im going to let my transplant soon and I easily get scars that goes black, Im afraid it will happen with a fistula."
It was in August 2018, when she was diagnosed with CKD.
Her Instagram story read, "Yes, I'm sick. I damaged my kidneys when I was younger. My kidneys are more sensitive than a normal late 20s healthy woman. I can’t overdo things, and I just found out. Came to the hospital for my severe migraines and we found out something potentially more dangerous. I’m thankful but at the same time really scared.
"Guys, if you take pre-workout [drinks]… plus heavy workout, be careful!
"Apparently, there are many more like me! We damaged our kidneys because of our gym life!
"Before you do or change your diet or drink something, make sure you don’t have bad health history problems! Always ask your doctors!”
At 16, she had IgA Nephropathy stage 1.
According to the website of National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, the kidney disease occurs when an “antibody called immunoglobulin A (IgA) builds up in [the] kidneys,” affecting the kidneys' ability to filter waste from the blood.
Her December 19 post detailed her difficult journey.
She wrote, "Yeah....... kinda have kidney failure. I was diagnosed months ago, I was in denial and thats why I left the Philippines to get a second opinion in Tokyo and when it turned out to be a confirmation. Flew right away to be with my family and my potential live donors. Yes, I will be needing a life-saving transplant. I live because of a machine, my dialysis machine and the doctors and nurses at Home Hemo Dialysis centre in Toronto General. I am blessed and I will continue to spread positivity to the world.
"I am in a good place now but my heart isn’t. It’s not easy and will only get harder!
"I am not asking for sympathy I am asking for awareness. At 16 I had IGA Nephropathy stage 1. I suffered from UTIs [urinary tract infection] when I was younger, food poisoning and stress. Apparently its genetics and popular in Asians, so please get checked!
"I am healthy and I workout regularly none of my family suffers from kidney related illnesses but things like this happens. Does not mean Im done. I’m unstoppable and will be healed! God loves me and he keeps showering me with love and blessings from friends and family! I am lucky and I am loved! Bad kidneys can kiss my @$$!
"Ps. No I suffered no symptoms! Symptoms started after my diagnoses and then the excess water in my body disappeared after and then was stable. Still it wasn’t enough I needed to dialyze. So please please when u feel weird and off, go get yourself checked!”
On December 19, 2018, she happily announced that she started having her dialysis done at home.
To celebrate such recent development, she wore a toga robe.
Her caption read, "Graduation day!!!!! I am sooo excited I brought my black toga robe.
"For the past 3 and a half months Ive been coming to this hospital, 4 times a week 5 hours a day. I wake up 5:30 or 6am, travel 2hrs and set my machine up. It tested my whole being. I took uber, lyft [car-hailing service], go trains, YRT [York Region Transit in Ontario] and ttc [Toronto Transit Commission] Toronto Transit Commission to get to the hospital.
"It tested my patience, confidence in myself, my faith and my family. Not gonna lie its still an on going process. I have shitty days where I allow myself to feel pity, sad and angry towards myself (usually weekly ) but I lift myself up, listen to Queen and dance naked (I look amazing naked since I lost water weight and been keeping it because of my machine) God could have let things happen by itself, without HIm intervening It could have been worse or in a troph from MI (not kidding I want my ashes in my trophy).
"God wanted me to live so He made me go to the ER for my migraines, He gave me friends who are too loving they can be saints and a family and bestfriends thats willing to share their organs without me forcing them.
"I am here because He wanted me to be here and for that I am grateful and will forever be inlove with HIM.