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My Bone Marrow Transplant

Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional.

Three years is the magic figure quoted by Doctors for transplant patients. If the disease isn’t back within 3 years, then the chances of it returning are small. I have 1 month to go to reach the 3 years! We are planning a big party to celebrate.

There is a big discussion on the forums about fatigue, anxiety and depression, and that some patients are being treated for PTSD. It makes sense. A transplant is a truly horrible experience, physically and mentally. You enter the transplant room knowing you could die from the treatment, knowing that you will be in great pain for weeks. Then the intensive chemo regime destroys your body, then the transplant, then the agonising wait for the first sign that it has engrafted. Waking up every morning is a victory; another day that you dodged infection, your heart held out.

But then the first uptick in the WBC signals it might have taken. Every morning you wait anxiously for the results. Another higher WBC count, then another, then hope gets stronger. It looks like you have pulled through.

So is it any wonder that people who have been through this are traumatised, get anxious over small things? I don’t think so. We have survived our own battle with death. We have faced death day after day, helpless, trusting in God to guide the doctors and nurses.

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