Blood Drive for my Mommy

Hi Friends – Thank you for your kind emails, calls, letters, gifts, and support to my Mom during her time in the hospital and at home. Many of you have asked what you can do to help. Here’s some info for you straight from my Mommy.

Mommy and I having girl talk.

Calling all friends! Save the date! Saturday, January 4th from 9:30-3:30 there will be a Red Cross blood drive in my honor. I won’t directly benefit from this drive, but there are many others who will. It will be held at the CSAA building at 39600 Balentine Dr. in Newark, CA. for which I thank them kindly for their space.

As many of you know, I came down with a rare blood disease called Aplastic Anemia. (only 600-900 cases a year in the U.S., my doctor says I’m “one in a million”.) My bone marrow shut down and my white blood cells started to attack themselves. I had a special treatment to kill off my bad white cells, so I currently have a very low immune system as I need to wait a few months for that to start up. My platelets are so low that my blood doesn’t clot well. This makes cuts and bruises dangerous.

To help me get through this disease, I have been having platelet transfusions every 4-7 days, and the blood transfusions every 2-3 weeks. I absolutely had no idea about the demand for blood other than for accidents or surgeries. Sitting in the Transfusion Center at Stanford with all the people with blood disorders and other problems, made me so aware of the need for blood. I can’t thank the donors enough for their gift of allowing me more time with my family and friends. I have occasionally donated blood, but I sure do wish I had donated more often. I am no longer able to donate blood, but I would love to give back.

So… I am asking for your help. My good friend, Rita Rosen, has set up a blood drive. It would be great if you could donate blood. If not, send a friend, child, sibling, or spouse to the drive. Posting this note at work, or passing it on to friends would be great. I’m not picky! Please let me know soon if you can make it so I have enough Red Cross people at the drive. And don’t worry… the only bowl game that Saturday is the BBVA Compass Bowl.

Happy Thanksgiving to you. I know that I am thankful for the generosity of strangers who made their blood donations so I can overcome this disease.

Love,
MaryAnn