For the past several months I’ve been working on a new section of the site entitled Donation Stories. The purpose of this section is to chronicle the stories of people who have donated marrow in an honest and personal way. I’ve done my best to provide comprehensive information about bone marrow donation on this site — the methods, the logistics and time commitment, and addressing some common questions — but something was missing.
Since I’m unable to personally join the registry for medical reasons, I’ll never know what it’s like mentally and emotionally to go through the process of donating marrow. I can write about the parameters of the time commitment but I don’t know what it’s actually like to sacrifice the time for checkups and blood tests. Up until now, the emotional and mental perspective is what this site has lacked. The Donation Stories section hopes to address that need.
I’ve written about Dennis previously in this blog and the fact that he was asked to donate to an anonymous patient in early December. What you didn’t know was that from the time of his initial call to over a month after his donation I asked Dennis to keep a journal about his feelings on the donation process. I also interviewed Dennis on video the night before his marrow (hip) donation and a month and a half after the procedure in hopes of capturing his thoughts at both times.
After a month of coding and video editing, I’m happy to announce that Dennis’ Donation Story is now available on cheekswab.org. His video interviews are also now available on the cheekswab YouTube page.
All of Dennis’ words in both the blog and video interviews are 100% his own. I told him to be honest about how he felt in all entries and video interviews and he did exactly that. So rest assured that all of Dennis’ words within this new section, both good and bad, are unaltered and genuine.
A huge thanks to Dennis and his fiancee Melissa for their willingness to deal with my constant barrage of questions and appointments. I’m confident that your willingness to share your story will go a long way towards addressing many of the concerns people have about donating marrow, especially via the hip.
If you’ve completed a marrow donation we would love to share your donation story on this site. Please contact us to talk about how we can do so!