Pippa Rea

Pippa's Journey with a Brain Tumour

L’amour de la Tour Eiffel

Sunday 14th September was two special days in one and Pippa was happy to share the spotlight with her brother – or should I say, James was happy to share it with Pippa and the Eiffel Tower.

We were dedicating the entire day to visiting the Eiffel Tower but it was also James’ birthday and he was celebrating by going to the top of one of the most recognised landmarks in the world!

How to get to the Eiffel Tower from our apartment?  Well, we just wandered down the end of our street, hopped on the batobus and leisurely made our way along the Seine.  Pippa, James and Patrick thought that in itself was fabulous!

The majestic magnificence of the grand structure close up impressed each one of us.  Along with the millions of tourists who visit it we also marvelled at its granduer.  Of course there was no stopping Pippa going right to the top and taking in every view.  We picnicked on the lawn at the base, walked around to the other side of the pond for the obligatory photos and rode on the carousel.  Patrick bargained with the souvenir hawkers, but it was James that came home with something like 26 Eiffel Towers – I still can’t work out how!!!  We took in every experience possible for Pippa to enjoy the Eiffel Tower.   Her dream come true!

It was a very special day.  We didn’t rush but just took our time enjoying every moment and at the end we had a birthday dinner for James.


Arriving in Paris

After hastily organising our trip to Paris we were all quite relieved to board the plane and head off into the night.  Little did we know that our experience was already starting.  We were greeted at the airport by Etihad Airlines and met by their special services ground staff in AbuDhabi and Paris to make our transiting and arrival as smooth as possible.  Pippa and the boys were treated to a tour of the plane and cockpit and Pippa was welcomed on the Paris leg with a gift from Etihad purchased especially for her and the crew from Melbourne to Abu Dhabi made her the most gorgeous French card.  The excitement was building and we weren’t even in Paris yet!

Our hotel on the first night was perfectly French and perfectly located a stone’s throw from the Arch de Triomphe.  A stroll down the Champs Elysses for dinner was just in order before we all fell into bed to sleep for Australia.

Our thoughts at that time were also with the thousands of runners back in Melbourne preparing for Connor’s Run to raise money for research into brain cancer.

Thank you to so many friends for various forms of help in the past week and to those who were able to roll up their sleeves to help get our bookings of flights and accommodation done so quickly in such a busy time.  The good wishes from everyone both in person, online and via text for our trip, along with all the tips and advice on visiting Paris, has helped transfer the focus  to become a wonderful time of excitement and anticipation.

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A Professional Rockstar

What does a superstar do before jumping on a plane and heading off to Paris?

Record a CD!

Last night Pippa fulfilled another dream and recorded her own CD.  It was 3 hours of work and she was a true star.  Singing not only all the songs (some of which were very difficult) but also recording some of the backing vocals to drop in as well. On Sunday evening she had photos taken for the cover complete with outfit and location changes!

The production and graphic design will all happen  whilst we are away and Pippa will have her very own CD upon our return.  What a fabulous opportunity for a little girl who sings her heart out every day.  So many many heartfelt thanks to everyone involved in pulling this off so quickly.

We finally managed to get seats on flights, a lovely Parisian apartment and are flying out to Paris tomorrow evening (Thursday).  We arrive in the middle of a 3 day music festival, and next week is Paris Fashion week – what a time for a superstar girl to arrive!!!




Paris Dreaming

This week Pippa’s treatment has come to a conclusion.  The chemotherapy medication is not working against the the tumour and it is growing.

We are now going to live her dream and take Pippa to Paris.  We are organising that at the moment and plan to leave as soon as possible.

The next phase is going to be about having fun and enjoying our time together as a family.  Together with Pippa and her brothers, I am taking little steps, minute by minute, day by day making one decision at a time.

The support and care we have received on this journey so far has been incredible.  I will continue to update this blog throughout the rest of our journey as it serves not only as a wonderful purpose of communication but also provides us with a fantastic way of recording and sharing our memories.

I have held suspicions close to my heart right through this but I have always said I will never post anything on this blog my children don’t know.  They are each processing the information they received this week in their own individual way.  We don’t have a lot of answers to a lot of questions, but they will come in time and I am sure Pippa will lead the way once again.  In the meantime we are going to have FUN.

The concern and understanding of everyone who reads this helps us and we look forward to posting pictures of Pippa and her French dreams soon.


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