Happy new birthday to me!

Posted: December 1, 2012 in Breast Cancer
Tags: , , , , , , ,

Birthday CakeSo when one gets an autologous stem cell transplant (SCT), they take your stem cells and freeze them prior to giving you the chemo that will totally wreck your immune system (and I do mean totally). In my protocol, I got 96 straight hours of chemo.  That is what I had for Thanksgiving dinner that year.  Then they let you wait for 3 days, while the chemo clears your system (of course now I know it stays in your system for WAY longer than 3 days!), then they give you your stem cells back because your old immune system will die and these stem cells will build you a new one.

We call the day we begin our new immune system, the day we get our stem cells given back to us, our new birthday. Today is that day for me. Back in 1999 I received my stem cells on this day. Was the sickest I had ever been … except for last April when they were calling hospice, but that was from the cancer. In 1999, it was not from the cancer.  At that point, I had no idea what it meant to be sick from the cancer.  No, in 1999, that sickness came directly from the transplant. UGH!

Today I get my daughter’s help decorating the house for Christmas (yes, Christmas … not holiday), then go see my horse, then a visit from an old and dear friend.  Pretty good way to celebrate a birthday, if you ask me.

Even though the new immune system didn’t prove to be any more effective than the old one, any excuse to celebrate, right? So happy new birthday to me! 😉

  1. Brigitte the Swiss Miss says:

    Yeah happy New Birthday to you Sweet Melissa

  2. Tammatha Brown says:

    I so appreciate you saying Christmas instead of Holiday Melissa. Don’t understand why the word is slowly being abolished & some want to change it. Tammatha

    Sent from my iPhone

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