In the hands of strangers

For some paediatric cancer patients, life-saving treatment is literally in the hands of strangers, and in April 2018 when we received the news that Lochie’s treatment had not been as successful as hoped, this quickly became our reality. A small amount of cancer cells were still detected in his bone marrow which meant that he was likely going to need a transplant to replace defective bone marrow stem cells with healthy cells. We were told that the best donor match for bone marrow transplants are siblings with a 1 in 4 chance, but were crushed to find out that our other son Aidan (5 years old at the time) was not a match.

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fresh air, a garden to explore, and grass to play on

Sierra was like every other active kid, loved riding her bike, walking the dogs, camping, swimming, and gymnastics. All until a few weeks before she was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia. Treatment for this type of Leukaemia involves 2.5 years of multiple cocktails of chemotherapy and high dose steroids. In the first 4 weeks of her treatment we watched her fit and active body morph into what looked like a 38 week pregnant lady in the frame of a 5 year old.

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“Carpe Diem” Seize the Day

On the 20th of October 2008 our 2 year old daughter, Kali, was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukaemia. This is news you, as a parent, never want to hear. After the initial shock of it all and realisation that her treatment was going to mean long, gruelling hospital stays, over many months, I quickly turned my attention to a life long passion of mine, physical activity/exercise. How was I going to keep a little unwell toddler entertained and active over such a long length of time under such tough conditions?

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The cruellest disease

The day I was told that our son has cancer is a day that will never be forgotten. For us, this day was Sunday 28th January 2018 at approximately 1pm. I remember the word “leukaemia” so clearly like it was only yesterday. It was that word said, almost 12 months ago that shattered the life we had previously known, never to be the same again.

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The Strength It Takes To Step

It’s hard to wrap my head around that this time last year we first heard the words: “Your daughter has leukaemia”. This one sentence changed the course of our lives forever and whenever I am back at the Royal Children’s Hospital and see that stunned look on so many newly diagnosed parents’ faces that weight in my chest that I felt at the time brings a heaviness to my heart.

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