Little fighters stories:
Please feel free to read all the stories of our little fighters. PLEASE NOTE: Not all the photographs in our Little Fighters Albums are nice to look at. Some of the photographs depict the horrid realities of Childhood Cancer. Sensitive viewers should be mindful.
Theo Eli Halgreen
Here is Theo's story, as written by mommy, Shanel. Most of you will find it difficult to believe, that he is not even yet 1 year old, but yet have endured a lot more than some people do in a lifetime.
"Theo was born on 26 July 2013 weighing a healthy 3.4kg , he is the friendliest little baby you will ever meet as he started smiling at just 3 weeks old.
16 January 2014 Theo's granny who babysits him during the day while we are working discovered a lump on his abdomen, his tummy was a bit lopsided when he lied flat on his back. Me being the paranoid mum took him down to the casualties the same night where they did a X-ray, x-ray couldn't show what it was so they told us to come back in the morning to do a sonar.
We returned to hospital the following morning and a sonar and MRI scan was performed, showing a mass on one of his kidneys. That alone was terrifying for us as parents, the only comfort we received was when the urologist told us its a deformed kidney that never stopped growing since birth which needed to be removed. Told us to come in on Monday morning and book him in for the operation, only to go to our paediatrician the Monday and heard the shocking news.
We have to go to Cape Town to have this operation performed, as it was a malignant tumour, called a WILMS tumour. Cancer in the kidney. That just took the wind out of our sails, after that everything has been a blur for us all, it all happened so fast, one moment we are sitting in the doctor's surgery receiving this news, the next moment we find ourselves on a plane to Cape Town. Our little boy unaware and oblivious to everything that is going on around him, still smiling and laughing all the way. It broke my heart and it still breaks my heart thinking back and looking at all the photos. How can such a healthy baby boy suffer like this?
Tuesday morning we had him booked into the Christiaan Barnard Memorial Hospital to have his surgery performed the next day by the wonderful Dr Richard Wood. We will forever be so grateful for the wonderful work he has done to save our baby boy's life.
Little Theo was operated on Wednesday morning, a 3 and half hour long operation to remove his kidney, adrenal gland and the tumour. The tumour weighed close to 600g! After surgery he was observed for 4 days in the paediatric ICU, to see our baby boy in pipes, and drips was the most heart breaking picture to describe. Sedated, no smile on that face and soft whimpers from him to let us know he was so hungry. By Friday he was awake and when he saw us....we received a BIG SMILE from him, we burst out crying, so amazed that two days after such a big surgery he was smiling already!!!!
He is currently on a 6 month chemo program and is still receiving chemo therapy and he will be done by August. A port catheter was inserted by his chest to be able to receive his chemo as pain free as possible. And up to this day our brave boy has never got sick and has shown NO side effects from the chemo at all. He is a healthy, fat and happy baby boy .... he shows me that no matter what life throws at him, he will take it on with a HUGE SMILE on his face!!!"