Pippa Rea

Pippa's Journey with a Brain Tumour

Flight of Joy

Pippa and I have talked this week about how happiness can come from bringing joy to others – at Christmas time this is an easy discussion to illustrate and have with Pippa – she has been busy ‘bagging & tagging’ some little gifts this week to help bring a little joy to her classmates, friends and family.
Yesterday joy was brought to Pippa. A very kind and generous supporter of the RCD Fund offered to fly Liz & Celia down for lunch and a visit. Wow! The result of that was Pippa got to fly in a helicopter and Liz and Celia got to have lunch at our place and meet Nibbles in the flesh, or rather, fur!
The helicopter ride was put on her happy list the night before along with going to school and seeing Jeff’s husky. We hadn’t really told anyone what was happening but as Pippa’s class wondered why we were leaving school at 10.30 instead of our usual 11.30 I asked her if she wanted to let them know.  I am so glad we did!

We went home for Pippa to have a quick rest before Liz and Celia arrived.  They were early – how I wish it only took me 60 minutes to get from Melbourne to Warrnambool!  The excitement intensified as we spotted the helicopter buzzing ahead of us as we were driving down to the beach – they didn’t have to wait for traffic lights!  Special arrangements had been made and the helicopter landed on a grassed area along the foreshore.  Pippa, Liz and I went up first and did a flight along the coast and river before turning around to do a fly over Pippa’s school.  Pippa was excited.  From the distance she could see everyone gathered on the oval.  She eagerly gave directions to Mark, “the blue patch over there on the grass is all my school friends!”  What she saw was not only her whole school waving, but one class lying down spelling out her name!  Very clever,  very thoughtful and completely lifting the bar on the excitement level.  We could see everyone waving and jumping around watching us as we flew by.  She was thrilled and we looped around a second time for another look at her name.  If only we had a horn to toot!!!

A few friends dropped over briefly after school which was terrific – it meant that not only could Pippa relive the excitement of the flight, but she also heard about how much her school mates enjoyed being a part of it as well.  They looked at photos and one friend successfully found himself in one of my photos – that in itself was fun.  We woke up this morning and she again relived the moment via the front page of the newspaper sitting up in bed reading the article.

Feel Good Front Page Article

Feel Good Front Page Article

It was not so much a wish of Pippa’s that was granted; it was simply the extraordinary generosity of a man who didn’t even know us to fly Liz from Melbourne and do something memorable for a little girl.   The added bonus of her thoughtful school community was the icing on the cake making it even more special and personal.  Pippa insisted that Liz be in the helicopter with her and me – I am so glad Liz was there to witness Pippa’s reaction as we flew over her school.

When I told Patrick and James that Liz and Celia were flying down to see Pippa, the confused ‘why’ that often comes from teenage boys was answered with, “Why not?  Some people get to live for 80 years and still don’t get to fly in a helicopter so in Pippa’s situation why shouldn’t she fly in a helicopter?”

As for what was on our Happy List for today……..it was going to the movies to watch Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.  Such a lovely and fun movie to watch.  Perfect for today.


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