At the age of 26, I was living in the Caribbean for a couple of months, when I had a little motorcycle accident. Nothing bad, just a few stitches. But I started to feel really tired and I was sleeping most of the time.
I decided to come back home in Canada to see my family and 24 hours after I landed, I was on an operation table with surgeon running around me. This was only the beginning. I spent 2 months in this hospital without knowing what I had. They finally found some kind of virus which they successfully treated, but my blood cells were just not getting back to normal. After months without any progress, doctors have decided to have me ran some bone marrow test.
I was diagnosed with myelodysplasia syndrome; a blood disease that affects the production of red cells. I was now living with a lower amount of red cells than the average. Apparently I was born with this disease. This was the first time I’ve heard about a bone marrow transplant.
But because my disease was not agressive and was still allowing me to have some kind of normal life, I’ve decided to wait to receive a transplant. I started receiving blood transfusions every once in a while. That lasted for 6 years until the point where I needed one transfusion every week.
The transfusions were no longer an option. I was getting sicker and I had to receive a stem cell transplant. It took me 6 months to find a donor. My sibling were not compatible with me, but I was finally able to receive my transplant on July 8th 2016. I have stayed 50 days in the hospital.
I’m now counting 2 years 1/2 post bone marrow transplant. I have never been so active and I am about to go back in the Caribbean for a few months to get back on my life where I left it. I have recently learned that my donor is a young women from South America. I would really love to be able to meet her someday and tell her how grateful I am for the gift.
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