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Transplant

All roads lead to this..,

 

Christy's bone marrow for Aidan. Such a little bag, such high hopes

Aidan and Alex watch on as Lucy hangs the bone marrow. This is the transplant

Aidan watches the bone marrow come down the tube towards him

 

 

The actual transplant is done by transfusion. It goes in over a couple of hours and looks just like a bag of red blood cells. But this bag of cells is so, so special. Before it gets "hung" you might find yourself blessing it or at least talking to it. Obviously you have to photograph it. I recall that many of us said "Go! Do good things" to Christy's (Aidan's brother and donor) blood cells before Lucy from our medical team started the transfusion.

Emotionally it's a tough time. There is a sense that you have finally arrived and it takes so much energy and focus to get to this point. At the same time your child's blood counts will be heading downhill fast, he probably wont eat for a few weeks, and he's incredibly weak. You will be aware that despite the awfulness of the conditioning therapy, the next few weeks might be worse. This is the closest to death that you ever want to see anyone.

In the weeks that follow, you'll spend all your energy keeping everthing spotlessly clean, trying to tempt your child to eat, devising new and entertaining things to do and soothing a tired, sore and very sick child.