Sunday, August 24, 2008


So this may not be weird to most people but it was kind of weird to me... I went to a volunteer appreciation event Saturday. It was for the Leukemia and Lymphoma society. They held it at Fred Hutch Cancer Research Center. I've never been to the Fred Hutch Center and actually didn't realize it was where it is. So here's why this was weird to me... my sister received her bone marrow transplant there. And that's all I could really think as I walked the halls... my sister had been here for a time. They almost killed her here (not on accident... on purpose. When you get a transplant they have to basically kill you and then bring you back.) The facility is beautiful. But as I walked down to the location the event was being held, I still couldn't help but think about the fact that it is a cancer hospital. And that was a bit depressing honestly.

They also did a presentation about leukemia and lymphoma and it was a bit sad I suppose in that there have been so many advances in treatment that my sister was maybe 1 - 2 years short of getting the benefit of. I'm pretty sure it wasn't the cancer that killed her, but the graft vs host disease. (although I could be wrong, it wouldn't be the first time since despite our Catholicness we are very WASPy in my family what with the not talking about things and all). So if she could've avoided the transplant, maybe she wouldn't have died you know?

So I'm sitting in this event which I went to because I really feel I need to get out and meet more people. Plus you know the dream... the hottie who volunteers right? :) And I'm sitting by my self because most people came with their spouses or with their friends (before you say anything Stephen I didn't invite you for two reasons... 1 - the invite said immediate family only please and you are not immediate family and 2 - how can I meet hottie who volunteers when I'm sitting with you??) and two of the women who work for Leukemia & Lymphoma Society sat with me. Which was nice because the people on one side of me were talking a lot about their own diagnoses and their treatments and the evil little part of me thought, dude, you people are old, why did you survive it? Well, actually the guy sitting catty corner across from me actually was currently in the throes of chemo so technically he hasn't survived it yet. But I digress. So it was nice that these other two ladies sat with me. But of course they asked about why I volunteered and the one offered the relative truism that most people who volunteer for them do so because they have been touched by it. So I said my sister had had it and they asked how she was and I said she died. And I will admit I'm usually rather blunt about the whole thing. I'm not one to say passed away or whatever. She died. Which of course slightly embarrassed the woman and I forget what all she asked but she probably got way more information about the whole thing than she needed. Oh yes because she asked about having kids etc. So all in all it was a mixed bag of experience. Although I did sit and watch the whole Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory movie they showed. I love that movie. Although I'm about 98% certain I dozed off during the part where (ooh actually that just went to 100% as I try to think about this) Violet goes all the way to the Wonka Wash. Hee.

1 comment:

Stephen said...

You know, I don't have to be your beard ;) I can also disappear at the right moments.

I'm a thoughtful wingbeard like that.