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Are you registered??? #MatchJake

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After partying way too late for several nights at Type-A Parent Conference, I was thrilled to sleep in my own bed last night.  Four consecutive nights of very little sleep apparently don’t sit with me as well as they used to and I turned in shortly after LJ went to bed.  I woke up this morning fresh, about as perky as I get, and ready to tackle the day with a big smile.

I turned on Good Morning America and started getting ready for the day. One of the stories caught my ear as they made a reference to Children’s Hospital in Wisconsin.  I rewound the DVR and sat down to listen more closely.  The story was about Jake, an adorable little boy whose bone marrow stopped working and needs to be replaced with a transplant.

The story showed footage of  kindergartner Jake being examined at Children’s and suddenly images of our own time within those walls when LJ was in kindergarten came flooding back.  We were so lucky to have had our story turn out with a positive result and my heart ached wanting the same for Jake’s family.  Looking at Jake’s sweet face brought me to tears. The story continued with the details about what could be done to help, just one simple step.

Register as a bone marrow donor.

The reporter went on to say that people of Irish decent were especially encouraged to be tested as they might have the most chance of being a match.  I decided then and there that I wanted to help somehow.  Being Irish myself (with a name like Maureen Fitzgerald – who would have ever guessed right?) I will of course register and be tested asap, but I also want to help in the only other way I knew I could –  help spread the word.

Many folks register to be organ donors (which you know is also a cause near and dear to my heart) but the great thing about bone marrow donation is that you don’t have to wait until you are gone to help.  Yet, I suspect far fewer people register for bone marrow than put the little orange stickers on the driver’s licenses.

Be The Match runs drives all over the country that allow folks to quickly and easily register with the bone marrow donation registry. You can even do it from the comfort of your own home with a cheek swab.  A quick search showed that a drive is being held in my area tomorrow.  I plan to go and hope that, if you cannot make tomorrow’s drive, you will find one that fits your location and schedule and will register as well. 

You could be the person who saves Jake’s life.

To find a live registration event near you, simply enter your zip code on the Be The Match Live Event page.


  1. Love Love Love that you are willing to help and get the word out! Thank you SO much Maureen!

  2. Thanks for sharing, Maureen! I didn’t realize that being a bone marrow donor is separate from an organ donor. Great post!

  3. Thanks for sharing this! I’m an organ donor but don’t know much about bone marrow donation so I’m going to look into it!

  4. Wow thanks for sharing, Maureen! Keep us posted!

  5. I’m also an organ donor but not a bone marrow donor. I tried to donate blood several years back and found out I’m unable to since I was overseas when the Mad Cow scare of the early 90s broke out. I would assume this carries over into bone marrow as well but I should look into it to know for sure.

  6. What a wonderful cause. Thank you so much for sharing!

  7. Your post finally gave me the push I needed to register. I’ve been meaning to for a long time as I’ve seen first hand how important it is. My younger sister needed a bone marrow transplant during her battle with cancer as a child, lucky for her she was an identical twin and finding a match was easy as pie. I only hope I can provide for another what my sister got so easily.

    • Katie – your comment just brought fresh tears to my eyes. While I love doing product reviews, giveaways, and parenting tip articles, the thought that this blog could actually save a life makes my heart skip a beat. Thank you for sharing that!

  8. I too am an organ donor and honestly didn’t realize that you had to register to be a bone marrow donor. I was tested once for a close friend but was not a match. Off to register now! And fingers, toes, and eyes crossed that you are a match for Jake. You have a beautiful heart Maureen! Thanks for posting this.

  9. I did the cheek swab recently to be added to the bone marrow registry. It couldn’t have been easier and the thought that one day I may be able to help someone who needs it makes me so happy. I love that you posted about this on your blog. I will be praying that Jake finds a match soon.

  10. this touches my heart so much I am an organ Donner because my grandma waited five years to get her kidney that without it she would of died I will go and get swabbed this next week! :)

  11. I’m a huge proponent for this kind of thing! Glad you posted about it!

  12. Thanks for sharing Maureen, I am an organ donor and glad to see so many others here are too! I didn’t realize there was something else I could do to be on the bone marrow registry, thanks @clueless_mama

  13. Awesome. You have such a big heart Maureen, I’m glad you posted about this! I’m going to register and share!

  14. Thank you so much for sharing this information!

  15. Thank you for sharing. I hope that little boy gets what he needs, and there are sadly so many more just like him.

  16. I’ll help spread the word. Thanks for sharing.

  17. Thanks for sharing this. I love to see bloggers use their amplified voices for social good!

  18. Awesome. I LOVE that you are spreading the word. Crossing my fingers and toes for that boy!

  19. My mom just registered for my great uncle about 6 months ago! You never know when you need something like this!

  20. What a great idea. Off to register now.

  21. Love this program. Wish I could find something close to me.

  22. Thanks so much for sharing this, Maureen!

  23. This is a great post Maureen my heart goes out to this young boy.

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