06 Oct Hi Mom!
So I wanted to dedicate this blog post to my mom.
She’s an avid reader of all my blogging.
She sent me an email today saying she really liked yesterday’s blog and kept checking the site till the new one was up.
Before this website, I used to blog for something else. For my dad.
I guess now’s a good a time as any to talk a little bit about my family, and everything that’s gone on over the past little while before this campaign came out. It’ll just give you a little background to my life.
If we start way, way back when I was sick at age 8, we see little Jess Grossman, lying on the couch, in pain, head on her dad’s stomach as he stroked her back while she held a hot water bottle to her stomach that her mom had made for her. Those were my parents; always there for me when I was sick from the day the pain started, to staying overnight with me in the hospital, through surgery, and up until I was able to handle my ostomy on my own. They were there for everything.
I’m sure more will come out here and there about my story.
But I don’t want to talk about my story; I want to talk about my dad’s.
In February 2009 my father was diagnosed with a rare blood disorder called Myelofibrosis. It was a blood disease where his bone marrow was producing scar tissue instead of red blood cells. In order to live, my father needed a bone marrow transplant. In order to get this transplant, my dad needed to find a match. As soon as we knew this was the answer my mother did all she could to organize a bone marrow drive. I started a Facebook group to encourage people to join the hunt and get themselves tested to see if they matched my dad or anyone else who needed bone marrow.
Within weeks, newspapers, radio stations, magazines, and tv stations were contacting my family and I for interviews to talk about the search and to find my dad a match.
In April, my mom, and tons of volunteers and helpers ran a bone marrow drive which brought in over 1400 new bone marrow samples for the worldwide bone marrow registry.
By July, we had found a match.
In order for my dad to have the transplant, he had to have extensive chemo to kill his body and start from scratch with his new marrow. For this, he had to move into the hospital to get himself ready. I was the one to bring him to the hospital on his move in day. It weirded me out, to say the least. I was bringing him to the hospital. It used to be the other way around.
Unfortunately, I had missed the actual transplant at the end of July because I was in Vancouver doing work for this campaign. My dad didn’t mind, though, because he knew what I was doing and was so proud of me. Thanks to technology, I was able to watch the transplant on Skype.
Because of all the support and the people who cared about my family, they all wanted to know what was going to happen with my dad. To save my mom, I decided I should start a blog to update everyone. This way, they could know what was going on with the transplant, and after, without everyone calling mom incessantly.
Even though my she knew what was going on, she read my posts every day.
Including this one:
Dad passed just before 1pm today.
Finally, he’s at peace.
Funeral and shiva information shortly.
Yeah. My father passed away on August 30th 2009.
I guess I just wanted to write this blog post to give you a little more information on me and my history. It gives a little context to my posts and to why I am who I am, and why I do what I do. I expect to reference my dad a lot because he played such a huge role during my sickness.
Well that’s it for tonight. I really need to get back to my homework .
[Psst: if you want to see my old blog and learn more about what happened you can go here]