When someone asks you to be a bone marrow donor you don’t really know what that means. Blood donor, yes. Organ donor, yes. Bone marrow, not so much. So when I was a junior at Sam Houston State my friend asked me to register for the National Bone Marrow Registry I had no clue what it meant.
You swab your mouth and fill out a form. That’s it.
I’ve been on the national registry for about five years. Two years ago, I got a call. I was a close match and asked to give a blood sample. The sample gets tested further to to determine if you are the exact match. I wasn’t.
A month ago I got another call. I was a close match again. A blood test and another call; I was a match. My bone marrow could save a life. It’s a surreal feeling.
This time, another blood test, and a physical. Medical history, social behavior, mental health are all factors that get examined. Recipients are suceptable to any small bug or virus.
I have a donation date. The process is similar to giving blood. I’ll get injections in the days leading up to the donation that put the peripheral stem cells into my blood stream. Spending four (or more) hours in a chair doesn’t excitement me, but it’s worth it.
No matter how inconvenienced I may be, it’s worth it.