My Inpiration & My Champion
Ali's Story, by his mother Ilknur
December 2011 was going to be a very special Christmas for our family, as we were going to go to our first proper family holiday with our son Ali. Ali has just turned 2 in November and looking forward to his very first proper family holiday and was very excited about it. Unfortunately, we never made it. Instead we were rushed to John Radcliffe hospital as Ali was diagnosed with Leukaemia and just about to start his first round of chemotherapy on the day we were supposed to be departing our very much deserved family holiday. It was a huge shock to me and my husband Michael, that our little boy was seriously-ill. We did not know what to do or what to expect, because we had just been told that Ali had cancer.
Our world was turned upside down, but still managed to keep positive and strong although our emotions were very high. Ali has started his induction treatment, but after 4 weeks of first cycle, the tests revealed that he fell into the higher risk group. This was another blow, but we tried our very best to keep strong and positive for Ali, because he needed us more than ever and did not know what was happening. Although the very first weeks were very tough for him, he always kept smiling and made us proud of his very well behaviour and amazing strength. He had to stay in the hospital almost 2 weeks and was allowed to come home for Christmas. We were happy to be home, but after the Christmas break we travelled to John Radcliffe hospital and our local hospital Wexham Park almost every day because of his chemotherapy.
On one of these hospital visits, I met Jane, the founder and director of Sebastian Action Trust. She talked about her experiences during Sebastian’s illness and was very helpful, because she could relate our circumstances. Jane told us all about The Bluebells (holiday home for sick children), respite breaks, practical support that the Trust provides, family days and support for the parents. It was such a life line for us, because we didn’t have anybody else to talk to, as my family lives abroad and Michael’s family is not very close distance either.
Ali carried on receiving his treatment, but it was a very tough few months, especially after he fell into the high risk group. His treatment plan was changed and he had to face gruelling and intense chemotherapy for the next 9 months. He completed his intensification phase in August 2012. No matter what, he kept smiling and was a very strong happy little boy, a true hero, MY INSPIRATION and MY CHAMPION. His strength and his positivity was amazing because every time he was asked to do his checks by the nurses in the hospital, he had a big smile on his face and helped them with pushing the syringes, or holding the blood pressure machine or thermometer.
Ali had a very serious infection after his Hickman line was put in; the hospital stays were very hard and tough for him, because all he wanted was to be at his own home, in his own environment. While he was receiving his chemotherapy, we did have some breaks in between, so one of those weeks we were told that we were able to book a week’s holiday at The Bluebells. This came as a pleasant surprise. Ali was a very happy normal boy again without chemo sessions, blood transfusions, blood tests or hospital visits.
We had a fantastic time at the Bluebells and every day was a happy day, and priceless. I have seen other seriously-ill children staying at the Bluebells and appreciate their time spent in this special place, which is built with love and consideration. Also Sebastian’s Action Trust provides other practical support to the families with seriously-ill children, such as transportation to the hospital, help during the hospital stays and support for the siblings, etc.
About the fund
After getting involved with a few successful fundraising events for Sebastian Action Trust, I have decided to fundraise in the name of my both children, because my children are my champions and my world. I have known the heartache of losing my daughter and the angst of my son’s on-going battle with leukaemia. I count my blessings for every special day and memory I have shared with Burcak and Ali.
This page is about helping those families who face the loss of a much loved child. We are part of the family that is Sebastian’s Action Trust - we are committed to walking with the families of seriously-ill children, now and always. Please help us to make the darkest days of a seriously-ill child’s life sparkle and shine, giving precious memories to them and their families.
A total of £8,005 was raised in 6 months in aid of Sebastian's Action Trust. An amount that will help 6 families to have respite breaks at The Bluebells, enable the Trust to provide support over the telephone for a year, or will cover the costs of running The Bluebells hydrotherapy pool for 9 months.
Running total and target
- April 2013 SAT Sky Dive Challenge in memory of Burcak on her 21st Birthday – £6,600 raised
- April 2013 Jessica Jager , a close family friend run London Marathon in memory of Burcak – £338 raised
- May 2013 Burcak’s close friends Kayleigh & Antonia and Shoard & Harris family has taken part in Windsor Crown & Tiara Walk – raised £478
- December 2012 SAT Christmas Hamper Raffle at Fiat Christmas party - £590 raised