Thursday, December 9, 2010

How it Started

“In Hodgkin's lymphoma, cells in the lymphatic system grow abnormally and may spread beyond the lymphatic system. As Hodgkin's lymphoma progresses, it compromises your body's ability to fight infection.” This is one of the first things I read about Hodgkin’s this summer from The Mayo Clinic website.

After finding out about Brendan’s diagnosis I began to research.  What could I do?  I entered the bone marrow registry, with Be The Match Bone Marrow Registry. Who knows who I could be a match for?  Max, a boy in the same sailing program as me, found a donor.  Turns out they shared a great-, great-, great-, great- grandfather. Read Max’s story. My registry packet came in the mail, cheek swabs and back in the mail, how easy!

During my research, my friend Jason was also diagnosed with Hodgkin’s.  Jason had not been feeling well on and off for months.  He always attributed it to a medication he was on, and his doctors made adjustments. But the changes never seemed to make him feel better. After his diagnosis, he took medical leave and began treatment. Due to an existing medical condition the treatments made him very weak. This weakness, on August 31, ended his battle. 

When I get up early on weekend mornings, freeze during team rides (its getting cold in Orlando), or hurt after workouts, I laugh when I think out Jason.  I am absolutely positive he is looking down, shaking his head and laughing at me.  He thinks I am crazy. He never could understand my time at the gym. I love the laughs but I would much prefer a hug.

I was part of Team In Training before, but the fight had just become more personal. A few months earlier I didn’t know much about Hodgkin’s, it has now taken a close friend and another is fighting for his life.

So there it is, and here I am, again.  Still “Taking It To The Max” and fighting for Brendan and Jason. Help me fight.

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