Thursday, January 3, 2013

Stem Cell donor search continues!

So, it is a new year, and for some (like our family) it is a new beginning. We have a long difficult road ahead of us, more so than others and even less still than some, but we hope for the best and push on. This will be a year of challenges, struggles, tears and happiness. My husband went into the hospital today for his third round of chemo therapy. We aren't sure how many he will need before they do his Allogeneic Stem Cell transplant, but we get the impression that they do 4 with this particular protocol or possibly even more than that. We are hopeful that they will find a match in a decent amount of time based on my husbands background, many of the donors come from Germany as they promote getting tested and even pay for it over there. Some countries are ahead of the curve in some aspects--more so than the US at any rate. The boys don't exactly understand what is going on, they just know that daddy is sick and needs to go to the doctor frequently to get better.

We spent Sunday and Monday in Buffalo NY at the cancer center for the consultation, our appointment took about 5 hours and we were bombarded by many different people (5+) including the doctor, finance, a representative from the National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP) as well as my husband getting additional blood drawn so they can type him specifically to find the best match. I will admit this was a lot to take in and try to understand in such a short period of time. They told us the good as well as the bad (which there is more bad than good) and explained all the ins and outs. It will take an unknown amount of time to find a decent match, then on top of that prepping the donor and then prepping for the transplant. All in all he will need to be out in Buffalo for 100+ days for the whole process. This will be interesting since we have 2 small children, and he will need a 24 hour care giver--me. 

We were lucky that our appointment fell on the day that it did--a few days prior we got 18+ inches of snow. We had a nice break in the weather and when I got back from dropping him off at the hospital today we had a Lake Effect Snow warning with an additional 8 inches of snow expected...Talk about timing! 

This is definitely a challenge for all of us but I think we are up to it, we can make it work.

Happy New Year to us!
Jennifer