This isn’t a blog post I wanted to write.
In fact, nobody would ever want that…
My excuse for writing it is… that it’s just the best thing I have to offer…
One year ago (May 2019), my wife Gosia, was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma – a type of blood cancer…
If you never had to go through such a situation in your life, you can only imagine how your world is changing… in a split of a second…
Your plans disappear, your life simply stops…
But you start fighting!
You have to fight and hope…
After many months of ABVD chemo, many hospital appointments, a few PET scans and endless blood tests we got the results… not great… unfortunately… cancer is still there.
The COVID-19 pandemic doesn’t help…
With friends and family far away, not being able to leave home, she is still fighting! She is my hero – even that I’m next to her I can only imagine what she feels insight… how painful it is.
It’s been a year now (May 2020)…
She is currently on chemotherapy called ESHAP – a much stronger regime with more side effects. This is a preparation for a stem cell transplant, which she will have in a couple of months.
Please keep your fingers crossed and send positive vibes – we really need that! We hope, to take more pictures like the one above (Ring of Kerry), once this bad dream ends…
Gosia finished the 2nd ESHAP chemo 2 weeks ago. It didn’t go without complications. The second cycle was delayed by 3 days due to her having an infection. She needed to take antibiotics before could start the treatment.
The immune system really is a fragile thing… Especially after strong chemo.
She is now at home, resting.
- PET scan on the 19th of June
- Consultation at University College London Hospitals on the 2nd of July – this will be our 1st visit in this hospital and the team will explain us the stem cell transplant procedure.
Difficult weeks ahead of us…
… that’s the nicest word I can use to describe our situation. Unfortunately, the ESHAP chemo didn’t help. Lymphoma is still there and only decreased in some areas by 25-30%. Not enough to go ahead with stem cell transplant…
Yesterday, Gosia started another chemo treatment – called brentuximab. She will probably have 2 cycles of that, followed by another PET scan.
So, another 2 months of fighting ahead of us…
Another few weeks with a few more complications…
The doctors decided that Gosia needed 3 cycles. Unfortunately, due to post-chemo rection, she completed only the 1st cycle fully and the other two cycles partially.
Gosia spent 3 days in the hospital after 2nd and 3rd cycle. We had to rush twice to E&A after she developed very high temperature – a reaction to one of the chemo drugs…
The PET scan is due on the 28th of August. Then, a week (or so) waiting for the results…
It’s been a while…
Not great news… We just got another result for a PET scan – a bit worse than the previous scan. This means stem cell transplant from Gosia’s cells is off the table…
We are moving to UCHL and will be under that hospital going forward.
The next steps are biopsy, immunotherapy and then most probably stem cell transplant from a donor… we really need more luck with the treatments…
We have a donor!
Yes, there is a person out there in Germany, who was so kind to register as a donor… DANKE!
The stem cells were collected yesterday and sent to the UK. They will be frozen for two weeks before Gosia will get them.
Next week Gosia will be admitted for 6-days chemo and then she will have the stem cell transplant. We hope she will be back at home a few weeks after. Then the recovery time will start…
Get Well Soon GOSIA! You are not alone!
Some of the most amazing people from around the world:
Maureen Spencer from New Zealand
Best wishes. I’ve been there too. Hope it all goes well for you. “One Day at a Time” helped me through!
Kathryn Bird from the UK
Karolina & Patryk from Poland
Moon Ray from Finland
Mark Anderson from the United States
Mayuri from Canada
Sending you love, hope, and strength from Canada. You are courageous, and you will get through this!
Max Lewis from Brisbane, AU
Sending you loving thoughts for a speedy recovery. Lena, 1.5 years
Holly from the Blue Mountains, west of Sydney Australia
Bhushavali from Brussels, Belgium
Emer and Nils from Ireland
Ania and Jacek from Poland
Faye and David from Prague, Czech Republic
James and Lee from London, England
Jeff & Zuzi from the UK but… currently stuck in Bukit Lawang, Sumatra
Would you like to do more?
“Every 20 minutes someone in the UK is diagnosed with a blood cancer such as leukaemia, lymphoma or myeloma“
EVERY 20 MINUTES!
That could be me…
But we can all help.
We can be a LIFESAVER one day!
Learn more about how to become a blood stem cell donor with DKMS: