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    October 20

  • 12:00 PM

Michael, mum need your help

shadiasimpson, shadiasimpson@nationnews.com

Added 15 October 2012


Dear Christine, My name is Michael and I am 15 years old. I have a rare blood disease by the name of aplastic anaemia. It occurs when the bone marrow does not produce enough new blood cells. Since my diagnosis in December 2006 at the age of nine, I was hospitalized at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital for eight months in isolation because I had no good immune system. I have had many blood transfusions. These were my lifeline until I was stable to travel to the United States to receive medical treatment. The doctors here said there was nothing more they could do for me. Since my illness, life has changed for me and my mum. When I fell ill, she gave up her job to be with me every step of the way. She never left my side. My mum is a single parent as my father was never there for me; not even when he heard I was sick. He visited me only once when I was hospitalized and never once donated a drop of blood to save my life. He just promises but never comes through for me. As I write this, my emotions are running so high. Christine, my mum is a good parent to me. She supplies my every need – from my monthly blood work to my meals and school supplies. I know it is hard on her and that my illness has changed her life a lot. She has had to raise the funds every year to get me back overseas for my check-up and for biopsy tests. She received a lot of help for me before and we are most grateful for it. This year has been very challenging for my mum since she is self-employed. What she works for is spent on me for school supplies, food and health care. Christine, the reason I am writing is to ask for help for myself and my mum to return overseas to the hospital in December for my appointment. She is trying her best to raise the funds but I can see she needs help. I see the worry on her face. When I look at her, she tries to smile but I know she is worried. My illness has brought me and my mum very close so I know her feelings. Sometimes I ask her: “Mum, wouldn’t it have been better if I had died?” She says “No”, that if I had died she would have died too, because she would not have a reason to live any more. I am her only child and she loves me so she hates when I think that way. Sometimes, I wish I never had this dreaded disease so that my mum wouldn’t have to do this alone. Christine, I do hope you can get some help for us. – Michael   Dear Michael, I am so sorry to hear about your situation which had been previously featured in THE NATION newspaper. I am also aware that for the past five years you and your mum have travelled annually to the United States for treatment, and that you have been making some progress having had more than 150 blood transfusions. Yet, you fight bravely on, even to the point where you are making a request for assistance on behalf of your mum. I have also checked and I am aware that your expenses for travel and upkeep are in the region of US$3 000. I am appealing to everyone who is reading this column, including corporate Barbados, to reach out to you and your mum at this time. Hang in there and keep the faith. – CHRISTINE NB: Any reader whose desire it is to help Michael and his mum may contact THE NATION’S offices at 430-5400 and leave your contact numbers and names. Please remember that airline tickets may be sponsored in lieu of cash.I will get back to you.– CHRISTINE


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