Mismatch

2 Mar

Turns out Jack’s bone marrow is indeed “the shit” – it’s just not my shit. Shit.

“He’s not even close,” said the pediatric BMT nurse when she called with the news yesterday afternoon. Jimmy and I were weaving through the parking ramp of the Science Museum, having just seen the King Tut omnitheater movie and knowing the whole time I had a voicemail from Mayo waiting on my phone.

The nurse sounded rather chipper in her message. Misread, I guess.

We just had talked to Dr. Arndt the day before about what we would do if Jack wasn’t a match and we had to wait to find a bone marrow donor. The trick is to make sure this pesky MDS doesn’t develop into the peskier AML in the meantime. Dr. Arndt had spoken with an international MDS expert at Mayo, but they cut their conversation short hoping it was one we wouldn’t need to have.

Well now we need it. Interim treatment may come in the form of chemo (ugh), but we’ll have to walk a fine line between keeping a cap on the MDS and keeping me healthy enough for a bone marrow transplant.

I’m waiting for a call from Dr. Arndt today or tomorrow. Apparently pediatric and adult BMT have a pow-wow on Wednesday mornings to discuss difficult cases (read: me) and put their big brains together to identify the right path of treatment. How lucky am I to have such a well-oiled machine of big brains working on me?

Until then, I’m officially looking for a match on the National Bone Marrow Registry (Be The Match). So, if you’re out there – maybe someone a little taller with French language skills and more freckles that would rub off on me – I’m looking for a marrow mate. You could be it.

Please join the registry – you may be my one in a million, or you may be someone else’s who needs it just as much.

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18 Responses to “Mismatch”

  1. Rose March 2, 2011 at 9:29 am #

    Hey Jenna,
    Just read your update 😦 Now to move forward to that french speaking taller match. We continue to pray for you and will also pray for the Mayo brains to come up with the best plan of action. If I remember correctly the neuro brains met saturday am. I wonder if they have donuts? Thinking of you often,

  2. Susan Garcia March 2, 2011 at 9:31 am #

    I joined NMDP (finally) in hopes that the good karma will spread and you’ll find a great match! It won’t be me with my half-Latina blood but I will keep praying for you to find a match as soon as possible! Keep up the fight Jenna, you’re a strong girl.

  3. Greg Kaiser March 2, 2011 at 9:44 am #

    Just registered.

  4. Cindy Hausch-Booth March 2, 2011 at 9:50 am #

    I am so sorry to hear that this is not a match. I’m praying for you and hoping that a match is found soon.

  5. Eric Hoffman March 2, 2011 at 9:53 am #

    Well, that does indeed suck. Keeping all my positve vibes going your way, Jenna. Also, I registered and my swab kit is in the mail to me. Your strength is very inspiring, my friend.

  6. Ann Tucker March 2, 2011 at 10:35 am #

    Well dang it Jenna! Although I can’t help but think there’s a donor out there for you somewhere! I have my kit and I’ll get Emily to do one too, ASAP.

    In unrelated news, I want to share that I was sitting here at work and wondering why my shirt felt strange and lumpy in the front. Turns out there was a sock in it and it was even peeping out at the neckline. This is after I had already sat and talked to someone face to face for 45 minutes. Thought you might appreciate that.

  7. Robin Hall Guadagnini March 2, 2011 at 10:45 am #

    Well….*#!^ …So sorry that your Brother is NOT a match. Here’s hoping those “brains” have a great solution for you.

    I went to the site to register: being 5’11”, blonde (not redheaded), I could exponentially increase your freckle population, and I butcher french– but since I am a cancer survivor (even tho’ early) I am not allowed! 😦 so sorry! but will spread the word here to try to find your Match!

    I am so very proud of you and you are a true inspriration!!! Sending all the positive thoughts and prayers your way.

  8. Clare March 2, 2011 at 11:34 am #

    Damn. I was so hoping! You’ll find a match in the registry…I know you will! I think I mentioned that I am already in it. So who knows. It may be me!

  9. Brittany Rask March 2, 2011 at 12:16 pm #

    Well frig, I was really hoping he’d be the match, I’m going to use my bleed purple relay powers and send out word to all my pa pals and friends to get registered. We already did a drive this past may for school, and I got my dad and boyfriend on, so ill get those european stragglers on their horse and get registered.

  10. Sara Martin March 2, 2011 at 2:37 pm #

    Damn. Sorry to hear that. Silly medical rules don’t allow me to register, but my sister’s on the list! Your person is out there somewhere, so I’m sending all my positive thoughts to him or her AND you!

  11. Brea March 2, 2011 at 4:38 pm #

    Oh Jenna my love. I know you love my inappropriateness so I’ll save that for facebook. Check there for something regarding “getting a stranger inside you”. (sorry if your priest is reading this!) But really, I’m going to be doing some big chatting with the guy upstairs, and I can’t wait to hear all about how they’ve found you a perfect match!

  12. Kirsten Lesak-Greenberg March 2, 2011 at 9:44 pm #

    Hi Jenna-Love — I’m so sorry to hear that your brother isn’t a match for you, but I (and everyone at PSB) am sending positive thoughts your way. I know you will find a match and make it through this!

  13. Angie March 2, 2011 at 10:47 pm #

    So sorry to hear that your brother wasn’t a match, Jenna. Know you’ll find a match on the registry and saying prayers that it happens soon!

  14. Jenna Bergendahl March 3, 2011 at 12:52 pm #

    Hey Jenna,
    My mom and I have both been in the registry for a year now, thanks to hearing about it on NPR. I love your friend Brittany’s idea about doing a drive and getting more people into the registry. I’m talking to people at work and extended family about this. Thinking about you…!!

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Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Matchmaker, Matchmaker Make Me a Match « The Redhead Report - March 3, 2011

    […] should receive while I wait for my BMT. We’ll have that conversation next week. As I said in an earlier post, the trick is to keep a cap on the MDS so it doesn’t turn into AML, but also to keep me as […]

  2. The Best Offenses « The Redhead Report - September 22, 2011

    […] I had always wanted to meet them. And if you remember, my mom, dad and me really wanted to BE them after we found out my brother Jack’s marrow wasn’t “my shit.” When I got impatient waiting for the test kit to arrive for him, I drove to the U, plucked him from […]

  3. Good Riddance and Happy New Year « The Redhead Report - January 1, 2012

    […] and returned them with juvenile jokes. I relied on a father (also stupid, but welcome, jokes), a brother, grandparents and other friends and family with the liveliness to heal. I benefitted from years of […]

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