In March 2007 Ellie, then aged 11, was diagnosed with a grade 4 Glioblastoma, an aggressive brain tumour. The Doctors expected her to survive for between 6 and 12 months. She had already had a 7 1/2 hour operation to remove the tumour, and followed it with 6 weeks of radiotherapy and 26 months of chemotherapy.
Ellie used homeopathy* and reflexology throughout her treatment, both of which helped her immensely; as well as setting herself regular targets such as shopping trips and fund raising.
In 2007 – just after her diagnosis – Ellie helped to raise £4000 in one night for her and the family. It was used for a family holiday to Euro Disney and towards trips that she and I took to London – Ellie and I loved seeing musicals together – and she ‘loved’ the shops too!
In 2008 Ellie told me that she’d like to ‘give something back’. Ellie and her friends then raised over £10 000 in just 3 days; which she split between charities close to her heart; charities that had helped us as a family, and Ellie herself through her treatments.
In 2009 Ellie was diagnosed with a second tumour but continued to fight, inspiring a song that she recorded in November 2009.
In just 5 months, ‘Butterfly’s Wings’ raised over £5500 for children’s brain tumour research. (I have a few copies left – please contact me for more info.)
Sadly, Ellie lost her fight on Valentine’s Day 2010 aged 14, 3 years after she first became ill. Her family were with her.
In 2008 Ellie won a Young Achievers Award, taking her whole class with her on her prize weekend at an outdoor pursuits centre. She managed to join her friends for all the activities in spite of the debilitating problems that were being caused by a build-up of fluid in her brain at the time – beating me easily at the archery!
In 2010 Ellie was nominated for a ‘Local Hero, Child of Achievement Award’ which she won. She also won the ‘Ultimate Local Hero’ award at the same event, becoming the winner’s winner. I was SO proud to accept those awards on her behalf. The whole room gave Ellie a standing ovation. A bittersweet evening.
(It took place a month after Ellie passed away.)
*Ellie found that complementary therapies helped her enormously throughout her treatment. These included homeopathy and Manuka honey, alongside reflexology.
She had 100 sessions of reflexology in total. When she was tired it refreshed her; after a seizure it made her feel ‘herself’ again. When she was down, reflexology boosted her spirits.
The homeopathy helped to reverse most of the chemotherapy symptoms.
And the Manuka honey is a natural antibiotic; keeping away infections and also keeping nausea at bay.
*** PLEASE do not use any of these treatments for yourself without speaking to your Doctor or a qualified practitioner first.***