Pippa Rea

Pippa's Journey with a Brain Tumour

Finishing up and leaving Melbourne

If only the internet connection and phone service problems I have had since returning home this week were the only things on my mind leading up to Christmas……..

We completed Pippa’s reirradiation last  Friday instead of Tuesday – 15 instead of 17 days of treatment.  Her body was tired from the steroids, the treatment and the tumour.  Fifteen treatments earlier we were greeted at Peter Macallum Cancer Centre by friends from a year ago with smiles on their faces and tears in their eyes.  On Friday we completed our final day and said our goodbyes again to those same friends with the same smiles and the same tears.  Now we start reducing Pippa’s steroid dose.  Our Peter Mac friends……

Deciding when to actually return home proved rather tricky.  Thus, we asked Pippa about things that were important to her and she wrote a list on her iPad.  She wanted to spend a day playing games with Julie, Harry and Charlie and then she wanted to go to the zoo but just with James, Patrick and me.  Pippa wanted to return home and go to school and see her friends but she also wanted to go to “Liz’s Christmas Party” on Saturday evening.  With all this in mind, we stayed in Melbourne until Sunday and returned home with the car full on Sunday evening.

“Liz’s Christmas Party” was the RCD Fund Very Merry Christmas Market Party.  Pippa was insistent that we attend and she even made sure that she slept before and after the zoo so that she wouldn’t be too tired to go.  Pippa feels a very special bond with Liz and Celia.  James and Patrick were slightly less enthusiastic to attend, but they all agreed that the best way to go to a party of people you don’t really know was to “Do a Tony” – smile, be happy and talk to lots of people you have never met before.  To try and say that we were all glad we went does not truly reflect how the evening was for us and I really don’t know if, in this case, I can put it into words.  We knew Liz and Celia of course, and had met Scott that week when he collected 400 shortbreads from our apartment that my mum had made for the market. Pippa and I had previously met Connor’s bother and sister, Nick and Hannah, once before and of course we both love her beautiful music therapist, Sarah, and Yoga therapist, Patricia.  Nothing though had really prepared us for the warmth and love that greeted us; the welcome we received from people who knew of us but didn’t know us.  We were taken literally into the embrace and hearts of strangers who made us feel like friends.  Pippa was (in James and Patrick’s words) made to feel like the VIP of the party – Very Important Pippa!   James, Patrick and Pippa participated by drawing all the raffles which was a very tricky task considering they were actually willing Pippa to draw out their own name!  They all felt happy and included.  It was an extraordinarily humbling and beautiful evening.





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