Diary of a Donor (Part Two) by Dan Wagstaff

Dan very kindly agreed to document his journey as a bone marrow donor and we will be sharing his experience throughout this week.

16th August 2013

“Hello, its Walter calling from WBS…”

My mobile rings, it’s Walter from the WBS asking how I was. I told him that I was great and that I was currently in Cadburys World with the family. I joked that I may need a second medical as I am a choc-o-holic and may gain a great deal of weight in one afternoon. Walter was ringing me with some great news. The date we requested had been given the green light and unless anything happens to the recipient or me that I would be donating my bone marrow at the end of September 2013.

Mid August 2013

Update call from Helen, need to have another round of blood taken. I talked to Helen and asked if she could do my bloods as I don’t want to take any chances on catching a virus/cold sitting in my local Doctors Surgery. It wasn’t a problem for Helen as she understood that I wanted to be as well as possible for the donation.

End of August 2013

I arrived at the WBS at 8.50am and was met by both Helen and Walter. We had a quick chat to see how I was and proceeded to have my bloods taken.

September 2013

Telephone call from the donation team….

“This is your 14 day check up prior to donation. How are you feeling?”

Answer: “Great” I told the team.

Deep down thoughts: I was worried that I may catch a cold, been as the weather was changing and getting colder, I tried to stay well away from anyone who had a cough or a cold, At this point I started to understood how the recipient must be starting to worry and I wanted to make sure I wouldn’t let them down due to illness, this is when I started to take on board exactly what I was doing for someone, and my focus shifted to them and all I could think about was how they were doing with their end of things, I hoped the recipient was doing well and holding on in there till I could give them my bone marrow and hopefully help them.

September 2013


At this moment I felt a range of emotions from excitement to fear and concern for the recipient. I was excited that my donation was only 10 days away, however I also felt fear as the last time I was in hospital for any sort of procedure or operation was when I was 13 years old. I am now 31 and never been in hospital as an adult and now I am going as a volunteer and not because I needed to.

At this time I was worried for my recipient and their family. They were starting 10 days of chemotherapy in preparation to receive my bone marrow. I am now worried about catching a cold or anything that could jeopardise the donation.

In my mind there is no turning back! I will be donating my bone marrow in 10 days time. For the first time in my life I feel that have someone else’s life in my hands. This is scary!