Her name is Clara Violet Boyle. She is very much alive and is a thriving 2 year old. I imagine that’s the answer to your biggest question. And I have no idea how to thank you or how to really begin the conversation with you.
I’ve been waiting a long time to be allowed to contact you. But I also haven’t known what I wanted to say to you or what you’d want to know or say to us. It’s kind of impossible to truly express our gratitude, and I also do not know what you have thought about how this moment would go.
At Clara’s 1 year anniversary of what we call her “Butterfly Re-birthday,” I began preparing myself for making contact with you. You beat us to the punch – and I was thrilled to hear that you had shared your contact info with the NMDP. That was 4 months ago. It took me about a month to get our signed consent to the hospital where Clara was treated and 3 months for us to finally get your info from the NMDP. We got your name and contact details today. I immediately Googled your name.
Here is what I think you might like to know:
•Clara was born on April 14, 2010.
•You registered with the NMDP on May 1st when Clara was 17 days old.
•She was 4 months old when she was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia.
•The specific form of her leukemia was high risk and, because of the infection that the NMDP apparently told you about, her chances for survival were so slim, you couldn’t calculate it.
•You were a PERFECT match for her. A 10 out of 10 and a match for ALL of the other less important indicators including down to blood type.
•Your donation was 3.5-4.5 times more than required, and they used it all on January 12, 2011.
•Your stem cells engrafted so quickly that they didn’t tell us initially for fear of getting our hopes up, and we were discharged from the hospital a month after transplant day. It is usually 100+ days and her hospital has never discharged someone that early.
There is a lot more that I could tell you. But I will begin to close this letter like this:
Your blood is clearly running through my daughter’s veins. She LOVES football.
When I told one of Clara’s nurses that we got your contact info today, she asked me to thank you on behalf of all the nurses who cared for her. Clara was a favorite on the unit – and there aren’t many good outcomes in the cancer unit.
You made a choice that many people don’t make. And your choice and your self-sacrifice and your prayers saved our daughter’s life.
I am grateful that your roommate and coach were able to publicly express the inspiration that you were to them. I am grateful to your 50 classmates who wrote you letters of thanks. I wish I could have been there for your speech at the Cortland youth football banquet. I look forward to hearing your story. I hope that you can feel comfortable telling us your story – if that is something you’d like to do. I am happy to tell you anything and everything you’d like to know about Clara.
I’d also like to invite you to read my blog. It is almost entirely about her treatment and recovery. And it’s a lot to read. But it’s yours to read or not. http://brookebabble.blogspot.com
With much love and respect for you,
Brooke, Clara’s mom
Alan, Clara’s dad
Rosalyn, Clara’s 8 month old little sister
Watch the story of John and Clara at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lUHToXvxJDk&feature=youtu.be&ft_src=EmailPromote&ft_sid=100487&ft_aid=27734&ft_uid=99404