In April, I received a call letting me know that I could potentially "Be the Match" for a person needing a bone marrow transplant (read more about that call here).
Last week I received an update from the National Marrow Donor Program telling me I WAS a suitable match; however the recipient is not ready for the transplant. I have to say...I'm a little sad. Because I know more than likely that the recipient isn't ready for the transplant because he's all better...unfortunately, I feel like he's probably worse.
And, yes...I know it's a "he". After my phone call, I received a letter in the mail from Be the Match as kind of a "hard copy confirmation" of the phone call...or maybe it came in the event that my phone information wasn't correct. At any rate, the recipient is a 50 year old male.
I won't know any more about the recipient...even if things turn around and he can do the transplant. I believe I'll have the opportunity to meet the recipient after a year...if we are both agreeable. But I can only imagine who this person is.
Even though I don't know his name, his family, or his friends...he is a real person. And I just have to continue to hope & pray that I'll have the opportunity to give this gift to him. The gift of hope & life.
Dylan asked me if being a bone marrow donor was on my "bucket list"...it's not really, but I honestly hope that, if not for this recipient, I can be the match for someone else down the road.
Mostly because if I were in their shoes, I would hope that someone would be found to be MY match.
I'm thankful for this opportunity. I'm thankful that I've been able to inspire others to sign up. I know there are people who are on the registry for years and years...and never get called. I know how fortunate I am to be healthy enough to give this gift.
I would urge everyone to join the registry...the process is simple. It's as easy as swabbing the inside of your cheek. This gets you "in". That's all you have to do to get registered. If you are found to be a potential match...it's about 4-5 vials of blood. If you are found to be THE match, there may be some pain involved, depending on whether they do bone marrow or stem cells...but it's a minor inconvenience for a day...maybe two. People who need the transplants have been sick for a long time...I can't deny them this small sacrifice of my time and comfort.
And again, I'd hope that someone would do the same for me.
To receive your testing kit so that you can join the registry...go to www.marrow.org. Be the Match for someone who desperately needs it!