I'll post a real update on another day. Today, my focus is to get the word out in support of my little sister. Last summer, she was diagnosed with Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia
. The picture in my icon is my little sister, graduating with her A.S. in Paralegal Studies a month before she was diagnosed. She started oral treatment in mid-June, and all was going pretty well, right up until the beginning of April. At her regular doctor appointment, her blood work showed that the treatment was no longer working - in fact, she was heading into a blast crisis. After further testing, the doctors found that her condition has become Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia
- and she will need a bone marrow transplant. She was admitted to Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa on April 7th to begin chemotherapy treatment to get herself as close to remission as possible before beginning the transplant process. The next morning, I went to Moffitt's bone marrow transplant clinic and got myself tested to see if I'm a match to be her bone marrow donor. Typically, full-blooded siblings are the best possible matches, but there is only a 30% chance of actually being a match. Yesterday, I found out that I am not a match and cannot be her donor.
Folks at Susie's work have been very supportive of her - they're even sponsoring a Bone Marrow Drive through the Be The Match foundation (formerly known as the National Bone Marrow Donor registry). The drive is being held on Susie's birthday - Monday, May 9th - from 10am to 2pm
. Click here for more information on Susie's donation page.
The testing is really easy - just a quick cheek swab and a few minutes of paper work. It only takes about 10 minutes of your time, and you could save someone's life. If you're not in the Tampa Bay Area, but still want to participate, you can click here
to sign up with the donor registry and get information about where to get tested locally. When it asks for a promo code, just enter "susie". If you're unable to donate marrow, you can still donate funds
. Every dollar donated is put toward funding Susie's drive and to help offset the cost of adding new donors to the registry.
I'm deliberately making this post public - please forward the information to anyone and everyone you know. Every little bit helps, and everyone can help in some way.