This qualitative, exploratory study examined the self-management experiences of people with mild to moderate chronic kidney disease (CKD, Stages 1-3) to elicit participants' perceptions of health, kidney disease, and supports needed for self-management. Findings revealed a process of renegotiating life with chronic kidney disease, which encompassed Discovering Kidney Disease and Learning To Live With Kidney Disease. A number of themes were identified including searching for evidence, realizing kidney disease is forever, managing the illness, taking care of the self and the need for disease-specific information. The findings indicate participants with early CKD want to self-manage their illness in collaboration with health care providers. As well, people with early CKD need guidance and support from health professionals to successfully self-manage. Nephrology nurses are uniquely positioned to provide this support while collaborating with other care providers to facilitate self-management.