How it all started 

In September 2017 I had routine yearly bloods done, which lead to my rather worried GP ringing me to tell me he was concerned that my platelets were 81. Of course, like most other people it meant absolutely nothing to me! 

He referred me to the wonderful Haematology department at my nearest hospital. A month later my platelets were 66, enough to be concerned about but not urgent. I was diagnosed at first with Immune Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP).

AA diagnosis

Fast forward to January 2018, and I started to notice some very heavy bruising on my tummy so into the haematology day ward with me to be told that my platelets had gone down to 12.  Also, other counts had dipped significantly.  Several platelet transfusions and three bone marrow tests later I finally had a diagnosis of Aplastic Anaemia.

However, there is an element of something else going on which has proved elusive.  Because I am older I am mostly on 'watch and wait', but also because I had intravenous immunoglobulin last year in preparation for a hip replacement which had to be cancelled because I had no response whatsoever to it.

My life now

On the plus side my platelets have slowly recovered a little, they are now 57! Also, my neutrophils are quite good too. I lead an active life, I have wonderful family and friends and I have a great little dog whom I walk every day. 

Like most people who I imagine panic somewhat about infections etc when they are first diagnosed, I did tend to isolate myself a little at the beginning, but now I go out and enjoy myself and count myself amongst the very lucky ones who can. I'm a sports fan and still go to the occasional match. I went to see the ballet last week for the first time ever. Swan Lake, it was so beautiful!

I am a carer for my husband who has COPD, so he keeps me on my toes!

I think it was John Lennon who said  

 Life is what happens when you're busy making plans, and how right he was. 

I would like to acknowledge Grazina [CEO of The AAT at the time] who was very helpful to me when I was floundering around looking for answers. There are very few people that I know of in Ireland with AA, in fact I have only had contact with one…