Cancer is a disease that has touched far too many of our lives. It is always devastating when we hear the word but it is perhaps even more difficult when it is a child that is involved.
Leanne and Chris Waite know this all too well. In April, 2021, they took their three-year-old son to the hospital in Swindon, Wiltshire. They noticed that he was in pain when they were changing his T-shirt, and the doctors felt as if he may have broken a collarbone.
Unfortunately, when they were running some scans, they found a lump on his collarbone and a second hospital was able to confirm the fact that he had cancer. After a biopsy was done, they found that it was a rhabdoid tumor, and the youngster was only given 6 to 12 months to live.
The tumor was growing very quickly so they removed it with surgery. A scar was left behind that stretches across his neck and then he went through chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
The mother of four said that she was in shock when she found out that Albie had cancer. In her words, it went from an injury to a prognosis.
Albie had to deal with the surgery but the cancer treatment was also difficult to bear. During that time he was lacking energy but his mother managed to breastfeed him throughout the treatments. He was also hooked to a machine three times daily.
Eight months after the original diagnosis was given, the family was given some additional news. They were told that Albie had recovered fully and was now cancer free.
In order to celebrate being cancer free, Albie was able to ring the bell at Bristol’s Children’s Hospital. I can’t even imagine how the parents must have felt when this moment came.
His mother said that they had the support of the extended family and that helped a lot. She also said: “Albie is amazing; he loves running around and is a social butterfly.”
“I think because he spent so many of his early days in and out of hospital surrounded by different staff, he has become so socially advanced.”