Why have I decided to do all of this now, 7 years on?
I am from the UK and I had a successful transplant in June 2005. There was one person in the world that was a perfect match for me and she was 4,500 miles away in America. It took over a 24 hours for the Bone Marrow to be transported from hospital to hospital. Now, with that being said, it does not mean that there is not a perfect match for me in the UK, it just means that there wasn’t a match for me on the register.
Last year I decided to go back to university at the age of 23 to study film, with full intentions of going on to become a film director one day. I won an award in March 2012 to make a film on the Importance of being on the Bone Marrow Donor register. I applied with no real thought about winning, I simply filled in the application form and sent it away and about 6 weeks later I received a letter saying that I had won.
I received a grant for a new camera to shoot my film and flights to America to see my donor so I could include her in it. Whilst planning the film I came to the conclusion that it isn’t enough to just make a film, throughout my illness I have had to take so much from other people, Doctors, Nurses, Charities and even receiving Bone Marrow from my donor. I really don’t like taking things from people but sometimes in life you need a helping hand.
I thought about it and I don’t just want to make a film and sit it ‘on the shelf” and that be it. I want to give back, I want to help other people live their lives, just like I can. If my donor hadn’t joined the register, only a year before I need a transplant, there is a very high chance I wouldn’t be here now.
My goal is simple, to help people become aware of what a BMT (Bone Marrow Transplant) is and how simple and easy it is to join the register and what happens if you ever get called up to donate.
Just think, you could be sat next to someone right now and be a perfect match and you would never know.
The problem is that so many hear the word ‘Transplant’ and ‘donor’ and think of scary operations and pain. In truth none of this is true. If one person reads this site and decides to join the register and maybe one day save someone’s life. Sharing my story will be a success.