Sunday 11th February 2018
Stronger Every Mile - Running for Euan
We are privileged to share Euan's story, as told by his mum and dad, who are taking on the Edinburgh Marathon relay for Glasgow Children's Hospital Charity!
I remember watching the documentary about the new super hospital in Glasgow, and being really impressed by the hospital, but at the same time thinking how awful it must be for the families who had children being treated there.
Not for one minute did I think that we would become one of those families the very next year.
Euan (5 at the time) had been a bit off colour during the start of the summer holidays in 2016 – nothing that we could put our finger on; just a bit tired and pale, and he’d picked up a couple of bugs one after the other.
We went for what we thought was a routine doctor’s appointment and were admitted straight to hospital as it was suspected that Euan had leukaemia.
Euan didn’t go home again for over 5 weeks, and when he did he looked unrecognisable. He’d lost all his hair and steroids had changed his wee face beyond recognition. His diagnosis of Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia turned our family life upside down.
As parents, we were used to making all the decisions concerning our children, but immediately after Euan’s diagnosis, all control was taken out of our hands, something which was very difficult to accept.
We were thrown into a world of consenting to general anaesthetics and surgical procedures, despite the very real risks they posed, and signing Euan up to be involved in clinical trials.
A whole new world had opened up to us. As parents it’s horrific to see your child in pain, and to hold them down for painful injections/take medicine you know will make them feel awful, but they have to have them to survive.
Our family has spent a lot of time apart (undoubtedly with more to come) and we’ve had to rely on friends and family to keep Euan’s sister Abi’s life as normal as possible.
Thankfully for us, the Schiehallion team, led by Professor Gibson, are an amazing bunch of people whom we have learned to trust, quite literally, with our son’s life. We’ve spent a lot of time on 2A and 2B, and just can’t praise the team highly enough. They really do make an awful situation more bearable not only by providing outstanding care, but also with all the small things they do.
We were admitted late on the night of Euan’s birthday last year, and whilst we were being admitted downstairs in A & E a slightly baffled Euan was presented with a phone and told there was a call for him. It was Dawn, one of his favourite nurses from the ward. She’d heard he was being admitted, noticed the date and called down to say happy birthday. It literally made his day. There are so many examples of wee things like these that make the world of difference.
We can never repay the hospital team for Euan’s care, but we’re hoping to say thanks by raising some money running the Edinburgh marathon relay with friends of ours. It seems like the very least we can do.
We are incredibly grateful to Kirsty and Daniel for sharing Euan's story, and wish them the best of luck in the Edinburgh Marathon running for Glasgow Children's Hospital Charity! www.justgiving.com/fundraising/kirsty-cornwall1