April 30th, 10 – Jake 21

Dear All,

I thought it might be nice to take the opportunity, now I’m feeling relatively well, to write to you personally. I feel extremely grateful to my parents for keeping you all ‘in the loop’ at times when I have felt unable to myself.

Some of you may know already that 2 weeks ago I noticed a swollen gland in my neck. We decided to come and see the doctor at the Marsden who then sent me for various tests to see what this was. We had hoped that this would be a mere infection and could be treated simply by antibiotics however today we received the rather difficult news that in fact I have had a relapse of my leukaemia. The consultants believe that this may partly be due to the prolonged absence of chemotherapy whilst the abscess in my brain was treated.

The plan now is to prepare me for a stem cell transplant for which I am extremely lucky to have an exact match with my brother Ben. Before starting a transplant it is important that I achieve a full remission once again and so the consultants have decided to start me on a course of intensive chemotherapy straight away with a view to readying me for a transplant in late May or June.

All this news has been hugely baffling and hard to take in but I am extremely lucky in that I can rely on my parents to write copious notes and try and absorb what the doctors are telling us whilst I at least pretend to be brave about it all.  It’s going to be a particularly tough couple of months but I’m sure with the tremendous help and support that I’ve received in so many different guises from everyone I will get though it.

With love to all of you,

Keep in touch!

Jacob  xx

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