Thursday, June 9, 2011

A Letter to Alice

Anyone who knows me know that I pretty much feel that cancer of any kind sucks. I have watched too many friends and family suffer from this hideous disease and lost many to it's clutches. What you may not know is that I am registered to be a bone marrow donor. I registered about 20 years ago during a drive in Northern Virginia for a young woman who was facing the disease head on. Unfortunately, I was not a match for her.

Today I found a news story and link to an interesting bucket list. It was written by a 15 year-old girl in England who will most probably not make it out of her teens. She, in fact, knows this as well. Rather than mope and scream online, she has chosen to try to stay positive and make a list of everything she wants to do with her life even as she knows she will probably not be able to accomplish half of them.

Yes, I am a big, fat softy. I cried when I read her list and her posts. I love her enthusiasm, even though she hasn't been out of the house or out of PJs for about the past year. I love that she is making a list of things to look forward to even though she doesn't have much time left. I especially love that she has invited the world, albeit unwittingly, into that private optimism and hasn't backed down just because more than her family and friends found her.

So - what is the number 1 thing on the list? Asking "everyone" (my guess is she meant her circle and not the world, but who cares) to be a bone marrow donor. So, that's what I am asking you to do today. If you are physically able, and living in the US, - go to the National Marrow Donor Program page and "Be The Match". If you are in the UK, go to the Anthony Nolan Charity site to register. Outside the US or UK, please do a quick search online for bone marrow donor and your country to see the rules for your country.

If she can be brave enough to fight this insidious disease for 4 years and invite the world into her bucket list, the least we can do is help her reach towards her first goal.

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