I want to share some information. It’s been hard deciding whether or not to tell people. Most of those closest to us already know about it. What I’m about to tell you will probably end up in the press, which is not something I actually want, but I think it’s time.
My father was diagnosed with a rare type of blood cancer known as severe MDS back in June. Ever since then I have been struggling to deal with the sadness while trying to practice on my own. The only treatment that may work is a bone marrow transplant. The survival rate is 30-40%. Doctors have been searching around the world for matching donors, but even after 3 months there was no one who completely matched. By this time the blood cancer turned into acute leukemia and my father was hospitalized. This was one week before my first competition in Luleå.
The doctors decided that it was possible to take bone marrow from his children, since my father has no siblings. My brother is underage, so that left me to become a possible donor. The preparations started a week before the Volvo cup in Riga. I had a full examination and a bag of blood was drawn. (I will get it back after the surgery.) This resulted in my stamina fading, since my blood count dropped from 173 to 140. It felt like high altitude training; even my short program was so hard to skate I was shaking from exhaustion.
A week before the Grand Prix event in Moscow, a second bag of blood was drawn. My blood count was now down around 130. I tried to recover, but time was too short and I had to withdraw from the competition. Like I said before, we didn’t tell anyone because we didn’t want the media attention.
But now we have had time to analyse the whole process, and concluded that it’s time to tell the people who have been wondering what was up with me and my father. I recently had the operation extracting many of my bone marrow stem cells. I am currently not training because of physical pain and low blood count.
This is released during the Swedish Nationals, because also here, I have withdrawn. I hope this procedure will help my beloved father, and I pray for the high powers of medicine to work. Thank you, doctors, nurses and friends, for all the support you give me and my father – you are all real heroes to my family.