I'm still alive!
I just reminded by Arum that it has been a year since I got diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia. I haven't pen down what happened last year in details, and after a couple close brush with death in between then and now, I figure I should start writing it before I completely forgot everything. This time, I want to recount some week leading up to the first day I learn that I have Acute Myeloid Leukemia.
It all started with a string of headache, a fever that comes and go, and a celebration of Indonesia getting a gold medal in Badminton in 2016 Rio Olympic. Looking back, I think the symptoms started well before that, I guess the first week of August I start having night sweats and fevers that come and go, thought it was just a mild case of seasonal fever or some sort. After a lot of hemming and hawing, and lots of stern talking from my loverly wife, I went to the doctor a couple days before the badminton final/ Indonesia independence day. Dr. Schenk initially thought its your garden variety every and prescribe diclofenac, a lot of liquid, and a lot of rest. That's exactly what I thought as well, as we watch Tantowi & Liliyana won the mixed double at the olympic. We were having an independence day party at Septian's place that day, Raili had her day out, and overall a lovely autumn Wednesday. But by Friday, the fever and night sweats streak still going strong, and as prescribed by the good doctor, I call his office and set up another appointment for the following Monday. Came into the doctor office, got my blood drawn on the lab, and finger crossed for good news.
Then the call came, it was 5PM, end of business day, and the news was grim. It was bleak. He basically told me to go to Erasmus MC emergency room immediately, with full set of clothes change. He didn't tell me what the diagnose is over the phone, just that he consulted with his friend in EMC, and that the doctor in EMC will explain further, and I should go there as soon as possible. So I did.
I went there with a set of clothes, phone charger, and a set of IEM, with the hope of being back home after a day or two in the hospital, as the week after I was supposed to head to Hasssel, Belgium to drop Arum & Raili at Dina's before starting term 4 of my RSM MBA journey with a week long study trip in Milan, Italy. O how wrong I can be.
When I get there, admitted, and blood drawn again. After some time has pass, a group of doctor came in and ask me, "Do you know why you're referred to us?", which I reply, "not really, my doctor told me to come here ASAP, so I did, but I do know there'e some problem with my blood result". Then the hammer drop. "You have leukemia" and that I'll be transferred directly to the hematology ward that night and tomorrow morning they will explain it further. The only thing I can think of at that time, is to call Arum to let her know that I'll be spending the night at the hospital and that she should come to the hospital the day after so the doctors can explain the situation.
In the back of my mind, my concern at that time is, "Can I get out of the hospital by the time for the study trip", and "Can they be wrong?". As well as, "Can I have some dinner?" I haven't had the chance to eat since the doctor call, and its already 11PM. Then the nurses came to the rescue with some food! YAY! And that's the first day I learn that I have leukemia.
One year later
It has been a year and spare since I learn that I have Acute Myeloid Leukemia. After 3 round of chemotherapy, a fight with the insurance to cover the treatment as well as the subsequent allogenic stem cell transplant, and said transplant, last week the doctor call me to inform me the result of my 6th month post transplant bone marrow puncture. The bone marrow is currently populated with 95-98% of the donor cell. YAY! It's another milestone in the journey, with the support of Arum, Raili, Mom & Dad, Mami^2 & Papi^2, Grandpa & Grandma, and the rest of the extended family, without them I don't think I would survive.
I'm eager to rejoin the class fully this fall! Itching to dig back into revenue optimization, sustainable supply chain, strategy framework, as well as devising the tactics to negotiate all that jazz. The next week I'll be immersed in supply chain topics in Hamburg. The 2nd largest port in Europe, Rotterdam still is and will be in in the forceable future the largest ;) Currently, I'm on the train to Hamburg for the long postponed study trip. This year, RSM MBA is not going back to Milan, which peeves me a bit as I really want to learn more about luxury marketing. But then again, Hamburg & supply chain was was my second choice last year.
A nice surprise presented itself as well, when Prof. Wynstra announce that there are two slots to tackle the challenge presented by Farmers Cut. An innovative vertical indoor farm that aims to feed city population with fresh produce, produced in the city's building.
Listening to Hamilton, I got reconnected with "Who lives, who dies, who tell your story" as well as "What a time we are to be alive right now". Can't wait to see what the future holds!