04 March 2009


There are several things in this BMT process that were new/interesting/sad to me.

One of the questions they ask is how many times was I pregnant. Not how many children, but how many pregnancies. They asked the same about Sally. Apparently each pregnancy can alter a person's HLA markers, so they would need to know why Sally and I might differ in this regard.

Sad thing to have to deal with: Parrots. Picard (African Grey) and Sunshine (Sun Conure) in particular. I cannot be around the birds after the transplant - for at least six months, but likely a year or maybe never again. Pico and Sunny came to live with us as weaned babies. That was in 1997. They have been part of our family for 12 years. It is breaking my heart to know I will have to find new homes for them. Abbey is also heartbroken. She is trying to figure out if there is some way she can take Pico. I am not certain how that can work out, but I will let her decide. But she can't take both of them. Please keep us in your good thoughts as we have to deal with this aspect of the situation, too.

Contacts. I can't wear them after the transplant for as long as I am on anti-rejection drugs or maybe longer. This will give my "totally awesome Ferragamo glasses" a chance to be put to good use. They are black with a classy array of rhinestones. So totally ME.

Gardening. None of that this year for me. I can't have my hands in the dirt or be breathing dust stirred up. There are things in dirt that can be very bad for me. Before I get going on the transplant, I'm going to see about putting some herbs in pots at my Mom's house and some heirloom tomato plants in her flower beds. Then later in the season when I am back home, I can at least have garden fresh tomatoes and basil.

In general, I am much more optimistic about the transplant than before I met with the team in Nashville. This is a good thing and I am focusing on that.
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Mother Jones RN said...

I didn't read anything about not being allowed bright colorful dishes. Thank God! I'm sorry about your beloved Parrots. Thanks for keeping us up to date about the BMT.

Hugs, MJ

Anonymous said...

Oh gosh, Becky. I can NOT believe that you have to give up the birds. How utterly sad. I am so sorry. And gardening! Oh my. BUT! Your health IS more important then these things. So you are right to focus on that. God Bless you, Becky, and keep you strong.

Lizzy said...

Becky, I know I learned a lot when my BIL was going through the matching process. His sister was not a match~she was the first choice. I don't think they even checked his half-siblings. His donor ended up being a female college student who had never been pregnant...apparently women are better donors b/c of their ability to carry a child with different blood characteristics. Yay for girls! She was a 10/10 point match if I recall.

I'm sorry about your birds~they are family, I know. I had a patient come in with a weird infection~he had leukemia and was digging in the dirt. In the old days, when I worked, children were NEVER allowed to visit, and fresh fruits and veggies were not allowed till the WBC was quite normal. I'm glad they've loosened up the rules a bit over the years.

Becky, keep up your fabulous attitude, keep blogging, keep smiling. We're all rooting for you!!!



Joanie said...

Oh I'm sorry about your sweet birds, but I have good news for you! I wasn't allowed to have pets either, and our dog had to go live with my mom, but after a year, he was allowed back again! And trust me, not being able to garden or have fresh flowers is only a short lived thing.....after this your transplant you will slowly get back to the gardening and all the things you love so much....and guess what? The best news is you won't be needing to worry ever again about your blood counts or getting platelets!!!! It's a small price to pay for a long term investment!
FYI, my brothers didn't match me, but we found a male donor who was 54 and he matched me perfectly! So don't get discouraged bc the perfect match is out there somewhere for you! I"m glad you are feeling better and actually seeing that the transplant will be a good thing! xoxo Joanie

Cora said...

Thanks for your candor in sharing all you are going through. I know we've never met, but you have an amazing warmth and spirit through your writing that makes me think of you already as a dear friend. I hate that you are having to go through all of this, but I want you to know that I will be there every step of the way. And Nashville is only 3 hours away, so I can be there for lunch, dishing and antiquing any day you want! ~ Cora

Anonymous said...

Becky, Thanks for the updates. Your positive attitude will see you through this journey. My prayers for complete healing continue for you. Love from NH, Carolyn

Hilary said...


I admire you so..........your positive attitude, determination and humbleness. You are blessed! You have wonderful news from the transplant team that you will be CURED! Soon, the past two years will be distant memory and you can go on and live a healthy and happy life. Sad news about Pico and Sunny but knowing you, they will find wonderful foster homes so that you can hopefully get them back. Wow, I did not know Farragamo made glasses.......just thoughts shoes! And the red hat will look stunning with those glasses!

Lots of happy times to look forward to! Hugs.

ChristopherM said...

I was thinking, if you need an antiquing companion in Nashville after May 9, I am only a couple of hours away. I'd love to come down for a visit and some dishing if you need the company!

Patricia said...

Your last line says it all.....

This is a VERY GOOD thing!!
Much love to you, and prayers for both you and your family, as well as your medical team.