In November 2011 I had great anticipation in attending the CR&T New York City Symposium overlooking Central Park. Not only were there the elite of medical professionals making presentations, there were also dozens of MPN patients and caregivers whom I had only met virtually through the on-line support groups. My joy of seeing all of these people in person in one place was intoxicating.
The Symposium had the world renown Doctors Silver, Mesa, Verstosvek, Tefferi, Hoffman, Spivak, Barburi who would share their knowledge and even speak with us one on one. Many of the presentations were way above my head but I listened to every word and watched every power point slide. The break out sessions into various MPN types were particularly educational and meaningful.
My husband, Joe and I, created new friends and formed closer bonds with our virtual members of MPN Forum and other support groups. Being able to hug Zhenya Senyak was priceless to me and who has been a great friend as Joe went through the stages of PV, MF, Mantle Cell Lymphoma. Joe passed away from MF and MCL in August 2015. Sadly there were patients as well as caregivers who are also no longer with us but are still so close in our hearts.
Today I am still active in the MPN world community since so many of us have become good friends. What joy Joe and I received when during our world travels, we would meet others such as in Japan, Australia, Germany, England as well as across the USA. The MPN network has kept us going when we thought we couldn’t any more. We shared knowledge and the love from each other. Thank you all for being an important part of my life.