The last time I connected with Suleika, she was undergoing pre-transplant chemotherapy for receiving her brother’s (donor) stem cells. She spoke at length about her writing, her weekly columns in New York Times - Life Interrupted, and her cancer journey in an exclusive interview with CureTalk.
Suleika was just 23 when she was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia (AML). She underwent a bone marrow transplant session at MSKCC. She received her brother, Adam’s stem cells and has just been discharged from the hospital.
Her boyfriend Seamus is her caregiver and her columns for NYTimes, those written from the hospital, talk about their relationship and how young adults with cancer have to deal with issues of infertility.
A Princeton graduate, Suleika is an amazing writer and has kept her followers updated about her transplant through regular tweets. Take a look at her transplant journey on Twitter…
A snapshot from the transplant. Today is Day +1, and now we wait. Feeling tired, docs say hardest is next 2 wks
It’s day +3. My brother’s stem cells are finding their way to my bone marrow. This may explain my new affinity for the Knicks & Wiz Khalifa
Saturday is Day +9: on feeding tube & constant morphine drip. can’t even swallow water. on the upside, really mastering art of hallucination
My hair is an arrogant, whimsical professor. As of today, it has decided to take a sabbatical. Good bye hair, hello Dr. Evil!
Day +13: Counts up! Looks like my brother’s cells are engrafting. Even got to leave my room & walk for a bit. Your well wishes are WORKING!
Perseverance is not a long race; it is many short races one after the other.” After 2 of the toughest days yet, trying to keep my head up
Day +15: @chezseamus reading Ann Patchett novel out loud to me. Is this good time to tell him I’ve enrolled us in hospital knitting class?
Sun shining. Birds chirping (well, that may be my IV monitor beeping). Projected departure from hospital: Tuesday!
Lots of smiles in here now that I have a release date. Thanks for your support.
Watching Shutter Island … because I haven’t had enough hospital drama yet this month
Out of hospital! The transplant unit @sloan_kettering is a level of “pampering” that I’ve had enough of. Looking forward to sunshine & rest
Outside for the first time in a month. Even though I’m bald, I blend in pretty well in NYC. A guy next to me is wearing a TOWEL for a shirt
Cure Talk wishes Suleika the very best and admires her strength.