Pippa Rea

Pippa's Journey with a Brain Tumour

Pippa had a Party………

……..and 150 people came!

It was just what the doctor ordered!

Classmates, cousins, friends of Pippa’s, friends of James’, friends of Patrick’s and family friends filled the bowling alley. Ages ranged from 2 to 78 and both ends of the spectrum had a go at bowling!! That competitve edge kicks in a lot more in your 70s though!!

The bowling balls were rolling, air hockey was intense (at Olympic standard) and one of the most beautiful parts of the night were the secret deals being made between all the “big boys” to ensure that Pippa finished up the night with the most enormous pink teddy in her possession! – Thanks Guys!!! ūüôā

The party (suggested but not planned by me, thank you; we just supplied the names) was a great talking point and distraction between us during our first few days of treatment and something incredibly exciting to look forward to when we came home. Pippa’s contribution to the party was to help me make a Ferrero Rocher Tower which she very carefully held in the car on the way there.

To have such an awesome party was the best thing to do on this first weekend back. She is still utterly thrilled about it and had so much fun. Thank You to everyone.

PS – apologies if I missed anyone on the invite list x

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Princess Pippa the Pink Poodle

Pippa has had a great week in Melbourne despite adversity.  Skyping her brothers every night has been beautiful and very entertaining to say the least!

Treatment is just becoming part of our daily routine and Peter Mac have been terrific in accommodating our schedule so we can come home on a Friday and return on a Monday to spend the most time with the boys.

It’s very obvious that there are people who are just born to work with children and the radiation staff at Peter Mac are no exception. ¬†Intelligent and skilled in their field yet so wonderful in dealing with children. ¬†Ashleigh, Pippa’s radiation manager ¬†makes us feel welcome and happy¬†every day¬†(whilst ensuring that the most complicated ¬†physics calculations align). ¬†Today she also presented her with “Princess Pippa the Pink Poodle” (how on earth she came up with this name I don’t know!!)

Pippa happily announced to me that this place is not like a hospital at all Рnot only does she get to walk through a tunnel of stars every day and go into a room with cool lasers but they also make balloon animals!!!!  In addition, she also gets to sing One Direction, Taylor Swift and Bruno Mars etc with Ellie in music therapy while we wait.  Apparently there is even a recording planned!!!

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First Day of Treatment

Step One, Phase One………. ¬†First day down of this particular chapter of our journey and only 6 weeks and 2 days to go ūüôā

Loaded up in the car with our enormous Pandora’s Box we headed to RCH and Peter Mac with “Nan & Tony” alongside all the way.

Blood tests, tablets and treatment……………Pippa still did not let us down! ¬†She was brave, calm, happy, witty and gorgeous every step of the way. ¬†This lump has clearly made the wrong choice of brains!! (not that anyone should ever have to endure one)

We arrived at our divine new “home” on St Kilda Rd overlooking Albert Park Lake to a small welcoming committee that included a bevy of goodies and a cute little fish now named “Bluebelle”. ¬† Pippa had been excited all day to arrive which took the focus of the other purpose of our trip. ¬†Nothing had been forgotten and it was very evident that a thoughtful group of friends and family had been hard at work over the last two days in preparation for us.

Thank You x

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Follow Your Heart

Pippa loves “assisting” in choosing my clothes.
Today she has chosen this t-shirt for me to wear……… I am

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Momentous Thanks

Tomorrow is day one of the next 6 weeks – the ¬†start of Pippa’s first part of her treatment plan and ¬†before we begin I would like to thank everyone for their support, concern and care. ¬†(As a post script from an earlier blog, we have been fortunate to obtain an apartment in a great location and are very grateful to those who have helped with this.)

Many times in the past month, I have expressed in conversation how genuinely overwhelmed and amazed I am by people throughout this tumultuous journey that my family has found ourselves in.

I have to use the word “people” ¬†as we have received messages, gifts, kindness, help and support from near and far; ¬†friends old, new & rekindled; friends of friends; ¬†and people we have simply never even met before. ¬† I honestly call each and every person our friend and I thank everyone from the bottom of my heart for their incredible generosity. ¬†I did shed tears tonight when it became very apparent to me that words of thanks are merely not enough for the support my family has received.

Very early on in the piece Pippa described this month as really being “Christmas in July”. ¬†In what should be such a dull time I sincerely thank you all for bringing her joy and light. ¬†We have packed for our journey a huge suitcase full or all sorts or interesting activities, books and games. ¬†Nothing has been left behind and it will be her own “Pandora’s Box” to open each day. ¬†I am looking forward to her and I spending some lovely hours creating some wonderful memories using all these beautiful things.

She’s tucked up into bed after special cuddles and chats with her brothers.

I’m as ready as I can be……….

Strong

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A normal average life…..complete with a head massage :)

Well, it has been back to normality for a few days. ¬†Pippa has enthusiastically embraced going to “boring old normal school”!! ¬†Secretly, I know she was actually very excited to see her friends and teachers and slip back into a normal 9 year old’s life. ¬†There is no better medicine in the world than hanging out with your friends doing normal stuff and having fun. ¬†We have watched James and Patrick umpire and play footy, seen cousins and grandparents, had yummy roast dinner, ¬†gone out for milkshakes, lunch and coffee, enjoyed home made Italian pizza with friends and made fudgy wudgy chocolate chip cookies.

Today was the day that the surgical strip could be removed and Pippa’s hair could be washed for the first time. ¬†As any mother would know, the prospect of attacking your daughter’s long, thick hair after two weeks of not being touched was not something I was looking forward to! ¬†Thus, I enlisted the help of cousin and nurse Carolyn to remove the dressing and hairdresser (complete with French chandelier) Rachael to luxuriously wash and tend to her hair……….whilst I sat back and had a champagne ūüôā ¬†Thank You x

The normality of school is welcomed again on Monday and Tuesday of this week.  Wednesday we return to RCH and Peter Mac to commence the treatment plan.   Pippa and I will be in Melbourne Mon- Fri until 6 September and can hopefully return home to James and Patrick every weekend.

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