It was November 2010 and my son Juan Ignacio, one year and seven months old, was being more annoying than ever. I thought that the reason for that behaviour was that his teeth were growing, plus some tantrum he threw because he had some whim which I didn't want to give him. Nonetheless, we decided to take him to the doctor, for my husband and I began to notice some purple dots in his skin (the famous petechiae). She told us to go to the clinic to run some tests and that same day he was admitted.
My god, it was no whim, he was very anaemic, the amount of white blood cells was very high and his platelets very low. That was the reason for why he was always being so annoying and feeling so tired, but one never imagines that his child is going to suffer from such a difficult disease. But it was like that, he was diagnosed Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (LLA). As I always say, one is always looking from the other side of the street, thinking that these type of things only happen to others or thinking that they only occur in movies, but it can happen to anyone. Life changes completely: schedules, habits, having to make miracles to arrive to work, taking care of your other children (I have two more girls)... the list is very long.
Juani began his treatment: chemotherapy, blood transfusions, etc. and all of that caused us to spend Christmas, New Years and his birthday at the hospital. There were so many new scary things that generated so many doubts but we had to overcome them, try not to be scared and to not think a lot about it, but try and look forward and live day by day. The key is to never exasperate, obviously, it isn't easy but time passed and here we are, happy!
Juani is currently in remission. Last July he finished chemotherapy, so now he is taking oral medicine and going to his regular check-ups at the oncologist. Las month he began Nursery and this Saturday March 31st is his birthday and he is turning three years old. It is admirable the way he has dealt with the situation, always with a smile on his face no matter what. You learn so much from this and from your own child! Thanks to him I took decisions I would have never taken before for fear (not sure of what exactly).
When he began Nursery I felt so moved imagining him playing, making new friends, enjoying the teacher's caresses, imagining his laughter... Seeing him in his school uniform tears up my eyes and fills my heart with satisfaction because it is the proof that we can beat everything. As I said before, it isn't easy but nothing is impossible and he is a good example of this. He is our tiny giant, our teacher in life, and for that we are going to be eternally grateful.
Warm regards to all, patients, families, and friends and especially to the José Carreras Foundation, you are amazing! I hope that you have enjoyed my testimony; reading these testimonies really helped me when my son was diagnosed because, in that moment, one feels lonely, full of fears and questions. So keep going! And enjoy life!
If you want more information about the donation of bone marrow to help people like Juani (and many other patients) to have the opportunity of a cure, click HERE. Remember that the donation of bone marrow is altruistic, anonymous, and universal. If you register as a bone marrow donor, you could be making a donation to a person from anywhere in the world. If you want more information, write to firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on our free phone number (in Spain) 900 32 33 34.
You could also become a member of the José Carreras Foundation. With a little amount you could help us to continue our research.