In the beginning…
Eileidh Rose Paterson was born on 14th March 2012, weighing 6lb 1oz. She was a happy baby & grew into a very bright, sociable, independent & stubborn little girl.
All this changed in May 2014 when two-year-old Eileidh started to experience difficulty breathing. Her mother, Gail, also noticed that Eileidh’s tummy was bloated. Their GP prescribed medication for trapped wind and told them to return the next day if Eileidh was no better.
The following day, Eileidh was quiet and withdrawn, which was not like her at all, preferring instead to cuddle up with her blanket. The family GP immediately arranged for Eileidh to be seen at the Royal Aberdeen Children’s Hospital. After many tests throughout the night, Gail was taken into a small room and told the devastating news that a tumour had been found in Eileidh’s abdomen and that an MRI scan was needed.
Unfortunately, the scan results showed that she had Stage 4 High Risk neuroblastoma.
More tumours were found…
Like more than half of children diagnosed with neuroblastoma, the cancer had spread throughout Eileidh’s body by the time it was discovered. The primary tumour was attached to Eileidh’s adrenal gland and encased around the artery to her right kidney. There were also secondary tumours in her bone marrow, pancreas, and lymph nodes in the left-hand side of her bottom jaw. Eileidh endured chemotherapy, surgery, high dose chemotherapy with stem cell transplant, radiotherapy and immunotherapy.
At the time Gail said, “My amazing little girl is fighting this evil disease with everything she has. She has coped brilliantly with it so far, but she still has months of gruelling treatment ahead of her. Her energy and smile make everyone treating Eileidh adore her.”
“Our hearts broke the day we found out she had cancer,” say Gail’s family. “Eileidh deserves the chance to live a full & happy life, which most of us take for granted. We need your help to piece them back together and make our family whole again.”
On 1st July 2017 Eileidh’s family shared incredibly sad news, ‘With a very heavy heart, I’m heartbroken to tell you all that Eileidh gained her Angel wings at 11.45am on Saturday 1st July. Unfortunately, it was discovered on Thursday, after an ultrasound scan, that Eileidh’s liver was enlarged & full of neuroblastoma. This was the most aggressive she has ever had as it grew extremely rapidly. She took her last breath surrounded by her family & cuddled up with blankie. She won the hearts of everyone who met her & will be sorely missed.’
1st July 2018 marked the official launch of the Eileidh Rose Puddles Project, exactly a year after Eileidh gained her wings, and a family fun day took place at the Village Hotel in Kingswells.
Eileidh’s mum Gail, from Forres, said: “The past year has been very difficult. The family has all just been trying to re-adapt to life without her. Eileidh was larger than life. She always knew what she wanted, and she often got what she wanted – she was very clever. Eileidh was also the most positive girl, she never let anything get to her. It didn’t matter how bad things got – she was always looking at the positive side. She never liked seeing anyone sad. It was her that got us through. She had no choice but to get on with it, so that’s what we did as well. She was the one that had to tolerate the pain. People often say they don’t know how we got through, but the honest answer is that we didn’t have a choice.”
My Shining Star were able to support Eileidh’s family towards the end of her journey when hospital visits in both Scotland and London were becoming more frequent, providing support financially to allow this to happen without further struggles and added pressure to the family.
Details provided by Eileidh’s mum Gail, from Eileidh’s journey pages xx