Pippa Rea

Pippa's Journey with a Brain Tumour

A Story of a Little Girl and some Very Big Boys

The Warrnambool Seaside Basketball Tournament was held on the weekend.  Some friends had organised a Milkshake and Pancake stand to help raise money to send their team to the Nationals in Canberra…….. A little girl decided she would help sell milkshakes and pancakes and sat tirelessly for hours on Saturday doing a very good job of taking orders and money.

Pippa and Andy

Pippa and Andy

Eventually her mum suggested she have a break and sit down for a bit and watch a basketball game.  She was torn, but she agreed only on the condition that she could return to her post.  Off she went to watch another team of friends – the under 16 boys teams. On returning to her post the selling area seemed full of the big u18s boys taking their turn at duty.  No, where there is a will there is a way and there was still room for the little girl to get in there and help!  Which of course leaded to lots of cheeky fun with the big boys.

Anyone for a Milkshake?

Anyone for a Milkshake?

When it was time for their next game, one of the big boys suggested that the little girl should come with them and sit on the bench.  That was the start of an incredible bond………

Walk with me Pippa

Walk with me Pippa

The little girl sat on the big boys bench for every game.  On the second day of the tournament, the little girl  didn’t sell any milkshakes, she spent every minute being part of the team on and off the court.  She sat on the bench and received her quota of pats on the back and rubs on the head as the big boys were subbed on and off the bench alongside her.  She handed out the lollies in the breaks.  In the huddles if she found herself on the outside a big arm would come from somewhere and pull the little girl into the centre.  She put her little hand in with their big ones for the motivational chant before they would run onto court.  In between matches she just ‘hung’ with the big boys and had fun.

The big boys won their under 18s grand final and the little girl was thanked for the part she played in their team and received her trophy.  The little girl is very proud of her trophy and it goes everywhere with her.

The mums and dads were proud of their big boys and the way they included the little girl with such kindness and warmth.  The little girl’s mum’s heart was touched and she is very grateful to the big boys knowing that they made a beautiful and selfless impact on the little girl.  It goes to show that you don’t have to be a famous sports person to be looked up to.  On the weekend, The Warrnambool Seahawks had an under 18s team of heroes and the little girl spent the weekend admiring the big boys and being part of their basketball team.  She was thrilled.

Slam Dunk....with a bit of help

Slam Dunk….with a bit of help


Back to School and Keeping it all Fun

Exactly what has pippa been up to since returning from Paris?

Well, Pippa, James and Patrick have all settled back into their routines of life, school and sport.  I wanted to leave Pippa’s beautiful blog post up before I posted anything else because it truly is gorgeous.  She loved writing it, taking the photos, going through all her purchases and reflecting on everything we did.  She really did enjoy every single day – in her words at school assembly when asked what she enjoyed the most, she said, “Well everyday we saw or did something different that was really good and every place was special”.  Once again thank you to those who helped get us to Paris so quickly and also of course to the friends and communities who rallied around us last year working very hard with exactly that purpose in mind.  I am eternally grateful to have been able to create this special memory for my family.

Pippa has now been back at school and aside from her breathing still being laboured we are really lucky that essentially for the time being on the outside she is not so different from any other ten year old.  In fact, she has started back at tennis, dancing and drumming.  At the moment we’re waiting for singing as at the end of the day her breathlessness limits how much she can speak and therefore sing.  Pippa represented her school at regional basketball and although they didn’t make it through to the next round she rocked the defence and had a lot of fun being part of a team.  Getting fouled when you’re ten is pretty cool actually 🙂   The school swimming program has started but that proved tricky as her breathing means she takes in water which makes her feel sick.  Thus, in keeping with the “Everything Fun” theme she now plays happily in another pool capably swimming and duck diving at her own pace.

Fun times have also been spent with cousins – birthdays, lunches, dinners, catch ups, plays and even a harvest picnic dinner with the world’s greatest Grandfather, Tony – just don’t ever call him a Grandfather!  We arrived home from Paris to information about a Rea Reunion at Christmas time so hopefully that will come around soon enough and more fun can be spent with many more cousins.

We spent last weekend in Queenscliff with cousins and lots of fun was had doing everything from crafts, to playing cricket, riding buggies, swimming, bashing a piñata, eating (of course) and going to the market.  Lucky or unlucky for the piñata the good old cricket bat came in extra handy.

After Queenscliff we needed to be in Melbourne for Patrick to run in the state athletics so took the opportunity to catch up with more cousins…….So much fun and laughter and Pippa was even taken to kinder to “share”.  Darcy & Alexander were full of cuddles for her and continually announced (and  even sang) that they were going to keep Pippa for ever and ever!  Apparently she’s going to live with them and never ever going to leave.  Just ask them!  So cute!

I agree with the boys.  I can’t imagine why they wouldn’t want to keep her.  I think keeping Pippa forever and ever is a perfect plan.

Not letting her go....ever

Not letting her go….ever



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