Celebrating the good days – with a new addition to the family

There have been many, many hard days during this brain cancer journey – but the last couple of weeks we have had more fun, a few more smiles and much more ‘play’ than we’ve had for a long time.  So we are celebrating and grateful for the good days.

Eloise seems to be tolerating this round of chemo well.  Her appetite is still very low, and we spend much of the day trying to get her to eat/nibble at something – but she’s doing ok otherwise (and still has her NG feed).  She still gets tired and is lethargic, but she’s content and generally enjoying her days.  And we are getting better at being aware of, and managing, her sensory issues.  So we are very grateful for that.  Eloise has such a sweet and kind nature – it’s really lovely to see.

A local charity called Momentum has been wonderful to us and has provided us with some ‘music therapy’ sessions for Eloise.  These are at home, so are safe for her to do from an infection point of view, and Anna is able to join as we do them after she gets back from school.  Having had so many things ‘taken away’ from us due to this cancer, it is so nice to have something positive.  We are so grateful.

Anna is ‘loving school’ in her own words.  She really does seem to suddenly be thriving.  She’s fanatical about her new swimming lessons – and it feels like life might be resembling a normal-ish childhood upbringing for her.

And so the big news….we have bought a lovely dog!  If you’ve been following this blog you will know that Eloise is dog mad (Anna and we all are too really…!).  We’ve spent many days in the past few months going to parks so Eloise can say hello to dogs – it’s one of the few things she can do.  So we decided to take the plunge and get a dog. 

So Kobe has joined our family and has brought the biggest amount of smiles!  He’s 11 months – exceptionally gentle and calm, brilliant with our girls, and is quite simply amazing – we bought him from a lovely family who we are very grateful to.  And Eloise and Anna adore him already and can’t believe how calm and gentle he is. 

It might seem mad to add more complication into our lives, but he really is giving Eloise confidence and fun.  Pete heard Eloise laughing yesterday as she was playing with Kobe, and feeding him his dinner – we have hardly heard her laugh since her surgery in March.  He really is bringing dog therapy…and we might officially train him in dog therapy in due course.

And for us, there’s a chance now, that Anna will remember 2021 as not only the year of Eloise being unwell and living in Covid times…but the year we got our fantastic Kobe.

How do we feel?

As you will see from the above, we feel really grateful for all the things we are blessed with.   Grateful for moments of joy and smiles, and grateful for a wonderful dog who is bringing happiness to the girls.

Enjoying the present.  We’ve had no unexpected hospital trips and are enjoying being at home all together.  We don’t take any of this for granted any more…

For those that pray:

  • Give thanks that Eloise is here with us (the average life expectancy for an ETMR patient is 9-12 months from diagnosis, so Eloise is starting to already exceed that!). She doesn’t appear to be having any seizures and is tolerating this chemo round well. 
  • Give thanks that Eloise is content and for the gift of having Kobe!  We continue to pray for Eloise to live up to her name and ‘fight for life in all its fullness’.  Pray Kobe continues to help bring out her confidence, smile and laughter.
  • Pray for Eloise’s appetite to increase so she has more energy and doesn’t rely on the NG feeds so much.
  • Pray for Eloise’s next round of chemo – that she tolerates it well and that it kills any cancer cells.
  • Pray Eloise remains NED.  Unfortunately it feels very binary – she needs to stay NED as there are very few treatment options if the cancer returns and the chances are high for the next 18 months-2years.  Please don’t give up praying.
  • Pray for other children affected by cancer, including many of our friends. September is childhood cancer awareness month. Cancer continues to be the leading cause of death for children after accidents – and of these brain cancer is the biggest killer. The diagnosis is devastating, the treatment is brutal, and the majorty have long term side-effects for the rest of their life.

14 thoughts on “Celebrating the good days – with a new addition to the family

  1. Ahh, this one really made me smile! Welcome Kobe – we also added a dog to our family (He is 10 months now) and the chaos and madness it adds is totally outweighed by how much love, distraction, positivity and therapy he brings in other ways. If you ever need dog sitters or walkers when you’re down in our direction, please feel free to ask!!! Xx

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  2. That’s brilliant news and the doggy is super cool . You are doing so amazing as a family and continue to be in my prayers xx

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  3. Pete, Melissa..just so thrilled you now have Kobe. Dogs can be super sensitive, and that picture of Eloise with Kobe speaks volumes! Great that Anna is well settled at school, and swimming too….a touch of normality. We continue to uphold you all in our prayers….with LOVE and God’s Blessings, Roger and Lauriex.

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  4. So happy to see Kobe I’m sure he is a true girt from god, so happy for Anna and Eloise to have their own dog, so many people her in USA continue to pray for Eloise and your whole family
    Such a happy blog post

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  5. Praise the Lord you all have a new friend in the family “Kobe” . May he /she bring added love , fun & peace to each and everyone of you xx

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  6. Thank you for update. You are a wonderful family. Continuing to pray for you all as you climb this mountain. May the day soon come when Eloise can run. Xxxx

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  7. Absolutely priceless. Wonderful Kobe looks very cuddly. Dogs are such wonderful companions and we’ve had a few. May you all have lots of fun and happy days.

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  8. Every day at Walton on the Hill Care Home we spend half an hour at 12 noon in ‘PRAYER TIME.

    This is’ when we pray for the needs of the world – the elimination of Corona Virus
    – Individuals, of which Eloise, and all her family & supporters & church are always included.
    Praise God. Daphne & Tom

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  9. Praying as you ask , giving thanks that Eloise is doing so well and loving Kobe .( he looks gorgeous ) . God bless you all ,
    Penny xx

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  10. Dear Pete and Mel we praise God for the updates with good news, we continue to remember Eloise in our personal and church prayers. And also we wish her speedy recovery and good time with Kobe.

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  11. What a blessing this fluffy bundle of goodness is!! So pleased for all the positives in this update, and continuing to pray constantly for protection over you all xxx

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  12. Rejoicing with you on so many levels!!! Kobe is precious and I’m sure will bring more laughter! Continuing to pray for your requests! ❤️🙏🏻

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