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A brief insight through my son's journey

From Karen Peters

Harrison was born 3.04.2000. Our new baby, our millennium baby, from that day we knew he was special! He was happy, playful, and learned to talk at a very early stage. Life was good.

Early spring 2002 he began to change, tiring very quickly, sleeping more then eventually became unable to walk. After many visits to the doctors, it was 18th October 2002 when we received the heartbreaking news - your baby has leukaemia. It was the start of our journey!

Life was an emotional roller coaster from that day. The start of his treatment and the effects it had, we thought we would never see our little boy walk again. Life was tough and we were still trying to accept what was happening. All our friends and family, except my mum and my dad, had all gone.  We were all isolated in the torment, as my mum lives away.

We had Harrison christened. It was one of the best days. He took his first steps again, and from there began to cope with the chemotherapy quite well. During his first year of treatment he became critically ill through infection. We spent almost three weeks not knowing if he was going to make it, that's where his song came in again. It was dedicated to him from the south of England - Reach for the Stars. It was played over the hospital radio. Then like a miracle, he became stronger and stronger. He managed his second year of treatment reasonably well despite having to be tube fed etc. And when his central line came out life regained a touch of normality, and he was once again smiling.

Then came the last year of treatment and everything changed once again. He started to get infections constantly, then spent almost six months in hospital as he contracted a rare form of pneumonia which lead him again to be extremely poorly. His body was failing and again we were watching him slowly slipping away. Clutching at straws we asked for his song to be played, as it had worked its miracle before!

The hospital had it played in his room and... he made it home for his birthday! He was still poorly as he had had lung biopsies and all sorts done to him, but he didn't let it get him down. He fought and fought. That’s when he won the little stars award for bravery earlier this year from Cancer Research UK which to him was a big achievement and especially receiving his silver engraved star! His second line came out in March this year 2006, and he has gone from strength to strength, and is presently doing well and was honoured to be a part of Relay for Life.

Thank you for reading his story. We are now doing our utmost to help in all ways we can, as we know that if not for you we would not have our son today. Thank you to everyone involved in cancer research. My son was also involved in one of the clinical trials whilst having chemo, and participated into research of cancer from two years old. His blood was donated for such research. Please look through my website, for which we now have global support.

http://stars4life.cfsites.org/

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Updated: 28 September 2009