Day 2018 Christmas time with Hickory farms and white diamonds

22 12 2018
Merry Christmas to all my followers  and readers  and anyone else who follows my blog. I didn’t include. I’m actually glad 2018 is winding it has been one crazy year. I enjoy the time of year though for so many reasons but one biggest reason is the nostalgic part of it.
My parents were amazing about making a little  go a long way. After my father became disabled the year may seem bleak but Christmas I felt rich with gifts. It wasn’t necessarily the quantity but the smell of the house,  the decorations, the tree, and Santa always took care of us.
I’m not a great receiver of gifts but I have my moms spirit of giving. Picking out the exact right gift and knowing I spent time and effort thinking of every person.
I love to give and so after I became an adult and more established taking care of my mom and dad became very important to me. My parents were very simple people it took almost nothing to please them. I would buy them a TV with a remote that took them 8 months to figure out, God forbid a new DVD player, an electric razor for my dad if it had more than 2 buttons then it was too much. My mom, I tried to buy them something that would get them out of the 1920’s but no they liked simple.I always liked to buy them something every year I knew they liked. It started when I was 25 I walked by a display in the mall of hickory farms ( it had assorted sausage logs, cheeses, crackers, jelly) my dad loved it became a tradition. No matter what I bought him you could see every Christmas that he wanted the Hickory Farms. My mom loved perfume. She found Elizabeth Taylors White Diamonds perfume and that is what stuck. We usually waited until the end of gift giving to give them the most anticipated gifts (if old people have anticipation for gifts). My mom would have pretended that getting a dead cricket in a gift wrapped box  was the most thoughtful gift anyone could have thought of. When she got the white diamonds, she would open it spray it on her self and then I knew it was Christmas. You could see the smile on her face that she got her good smelling gift for the year.Then you look over and see my dad digging through his Hickory Farms plotting his Christmas day eating plan.
Its cumming up on my dad being gone 14 years in February and on the 29th of this month my mom being gone 3 years. I so miss them and Christmas when I drove home and the first hugs of Christmas, the dinner and gift time. To see my parents smile with a genuine happiness.
Tuesday night I went shopping at the mall for my daughter. I’m walking upstairs and there it was Hickory Farms kiosk. All the things I bought my dad and the strawberry mint he loved. It made me smile, but my heart was heavy. It brought back the last Christmas I saw him alive. He couldn’t unwrap the box, so I cut up the sausage and let him eat some it.I remember the smile. i walked around for a bit lost in the  mall just thinking. Then a lady walked by and the smell I could pickup anywhere it was white diamonds. Older women wear white diamonds and looked up an older with white diamonds and that smell I remembered for most of my life. I sat down and had tears run down my cheeks. Damn I miss them I thought. If you don’t believe that your loved that have passed dont leave you reminders their still around I will prove to you otherwise. A that moment I got to remember those moments.  Those 2 amazing people who helped mold me into the man I am today. Also why I give, not because I have to but the joy it brings me and the joy to think about what the smiles of Christmas mean.
Another blog memory for me. I hope you enjoyed and Merry Christmas . Love you
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Day 172 One of the greatest gifts given to me

28 06 2013

Today is a great day in my life. My friend had her 7th birthday today. My almost 32-year-old  friend had her 7th birthday from a stem cell donation. 7 years ago I was allowed and given the greatest gift of being able to save Penny’s life through stem cell transfer. In 1996 I was sitting in the Dr office and I filled out an application to join the National Bone Marrow Registry thinking nothing about it. Then in 2006 I got the call.

National Bone Marrow Registry

My friend Penny has PNH- Paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria (PNH) is a rare, acquired, life-threatening disease of the blood. The disease is characterized by destruction of red blood cells (hemolytic anemia), blood clots (thrombosis), impaired bone marrow function, and a 3 to 5% risk of developing leukemia. PNH affects only 1-2 persons per million of the population and is a disease of young adults (median age of diagnosis 35-40 years of age) with occasional cases diagnosed in childhood or adolescence. PNH is closely related to aplastic anemia. In fact, up to 30% of newly diagnosed cases of PNH evolve from aplastic anemia. Similarly, the risk developing PNH after treatment for aplastic anemia with immunosuppressive therapy (anti-thymocyte globulin and cyclosporine) is approximately 20 to 30%. The median survival after diagnosis is 10 years; however, some patients can survive for decades with only minor symptoms.

Penny carried the disease for 10 years and then there was a match. To think that someone in the world matches that close to you.  I got the call and went through a series of test and then was given the opportunity to say no. Yes there is an option to say no. Even when you start the 7 day process you can say no on the last day. What I went through was nothing compared to Penny. They essentially destroyed her body and then waited for my stem cells. We would have done bone marrow but she needed it now and this was the fastest way. ON the last day you feel like you pneumonia but as soon as they draw out the stem cells you really at that moment go back to feeling normal. There was a man there waiting to get my stem cells to California. When you go through this you have no idea of who the person is except if they are female or male and age. After one year if both parties agree you can meet. Its kind of heartbreaking because you have no idea if the stem cells took.

Lucky for me my stem cells took and around 18 months later I got to meet Penny. She is amazing and took on many of my qualities like, lactose intolerance. Today Penny and I are close and in the fall she starts her Masters Degree in Colorado. Im just so thankful that I got a chance for the gift of saving a life.

 





Day 172 One of the greatest gifts given to me

27 06 2013

Today is a great day in my life. My friend had her 7th birthday today. My almost 32-year-old  friend had her 7th birthday from a stem cell donation. 7 years ago I was allowed and given the greatest gift of being able to save Penny’s life through stem cell transfer. In 1996 I was sitting in the Dr office and I filled out an application to join the National Bone Marrow Registry thinking nothing about it. Then in 2006 I got the call.

National Bone Marrow Registry

My friend Penny has PNH- Paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria (PNH) is a rare, acquired, life-threatening disease of the blood. The disease is characterized by destruction of red blood cells (hemolytic anemia), blood clots (thrombosis), impaired bone marrow function, and a 3 to 5% risk of developing leukemia. PNH affects only 1-2 persons per million of the population and is a disease of young adults (median age of diagnosis 35-40 years of age) with occasional cases diagnosed in childhood or adolescence. PNH is closely related to aplastic anemia. In fact, up to 30% of newly diagnosed cases of PNH evolve from aplastic anemia. Similarly, the risk developing PNH after treatment for aplastic anemia with immunosuppressive therapy (anti-thymocyte globulin and cyclosporine) is approximately 20 to 30%. The median survival after diagnosis is 10 years; however, some patients can survive for decades with only minor symptoms.

Penny carried the disease for 10 years and then there was a match. To think that someone in the world matches that close to you.  I got the call and went through a series of test and then was given the opportunity to say no. Yes there is an option to say no. Even when you start the 7 day process you can say no on the last day. What I went through was nothing compared to Penny. They essentially destroyed her body and then waited for my stem cells. We would have done bone marrow but she needed it now and this was the fastest way. ON the last day you feel like you pneumonia but as soon as they draw out the stem cells you really at that moment go back to feeling normal. There was a man there waiting to get my stem cells to California. When you go through this you have no idea of who the person is except if they are female or male and age. After one year if both parties agree you can meet. Its kind of heartbreaking because you have no idea if the stem cells took.

Lucky for me my stem cells took and around 18 months later I got to meet Penny. She is amazing and took on many of my qualities like, lactose intolerance. Today Penny and I are close and in the fall she starts her Masters Degree in Colorado. Im just so thankful that I got a chance for the gift of saving a life.

 








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