Have you ever experienced that thought and stomach-turning feeling telling you something is wrong? That’s exactly what Becky began to feel after her 10-year-old daughter was under the weather for weeks with no sign of improvement. On June 25, 2021, a trip to the emergency department revealed some devastating news that would impact not just Charlotte, but the entire family.
Those 3 words changed everything, including where Charlotte’s family would have to be if she was to receive the medical care she needed. A series of tests had determined that in addition to blood cancer, Charlotte had a large tumour in her chest and several smaller tumours in her abdomen. Charlotte needed to go to London Children’s Hospital and Becky, John, and younger sisters Claire and Mila would need a “home-away-from-home” close by.
After arriving in London the family was presented with a diagnosis of T-cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) and informed that the next week would be very critical. The size of the tumours and the aggressive nature of the leukemia made Charlotte's situation very serious, and chemotherapy began immediately.
The initial shock and stress of diagnosis is such a whirlwind of emotions, and it is a challenge just to survive the day let alone deal with lodging and food. It was such a relief to be steps away from the hospital (at RMH London) not having to worry about basic needs for the family.
Being able to stay close for 128 nights has given their family the ability to take life one day at a time and enjoy all the little moments.
Our family enjoyed many family movie nights in the beautiful theatre room. We were so grateful to have this opportunity to cuddle up and enjoy family time just like we do at home. In November 2021, Charlotte had the opportunity to light up the House live on TV for the Christmas season! This will be a cherished memory that we will treasure.
Charlotte is still receiving treatment, over 800 km away from her Northern Ontario home, but having her family with her makes it feel like home even at the hospital. We hope you’ll send your positive thoughts to Charlotte and her family as they continue this journey, together.
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