I got on the list in 2014 at an Andrew McMahon concert after watching his documentary about defeating cancer with the help of a bone marrow donation, Dear Jack. I signed up with the thought that I would never be matched as they advertised less than 4% of all donors ever are. I was wrong. In September of 2015, I received a call that I was a match. I needed to fill out a health survey and begin blood work as the process moved forward. In November, I was told that my donation was not moving forward at the time but there was the possibility that I would be called upon in the future. I was disappointed but also a tad bit relieved as I have this harrowing phobia of needles.
In January 2016, I was asked if I was still willing to move forward as the patient and their doctor wanted to do the procedure. Of course I said yes, my phobia does not compare to what the patient had gone through or the possibility of saving someone else’s life. I donated through bone marrow donation, rather than PBSC, in March of 2016. I was nervous but had a fantastic care team helping me along the way! The generous outpouring of support from all around me was humbling. I made it though and about one month later received the news that my patient was discharged from the hospital as they continue to progress through recovery! The news brought tears to my eyes as I know that I helped this person! I have never felt anything so powerful as I felt that day.
Author: Doug Booth, Bone Marrow Donor