Lit­tle bat­tler ful­fils wish

Southern Telegraph - - Front Page - Narelle Whit­taker

Char­lie Scaife is re­learn­ing to walk, talk and feed her­self af­ter de­struc­tive brain cancer surgery, but one thing that came nat­u­rally on Satur­day was her smile as the 10-year-old was granted a shop­ping spree.

The East Waikiki Pri­mary School stu­dent was treated like a celebrity, ar­riv­ing at Rock­ing­ham Cen­tre in a limou­sine and lav­ished with gifts and lunch, be­fore pil­ing up a trol­ley in Kmart, cour­tesy of the Make-A-Wish Foun­da­tion.

Mother Danielle Scaife said the wish gave Char­lie some­thing to look for­ward to af­ter a hor­ren­dous year-long bat­tle for her health.

Char­lie was di­ag­nosed with a 5cm medul­loblas­toma last June.

“I think we were just in shock for quite a while . . . noth­ing re­ally sunk in,” Ms Scaife said.

“I thought the surgery would be the worst part, but the doc­tors kept telling us that was the easy part and they were right. The treat­ment af­ter has been in­tense.”

Af­ter com­plain­ing of headaches and loss of bal­ance, Char­lie’s cancer was de­tected dur­ing an emer­gency MRI.

She was hos­pi­talised im­me­di­ately and days later faced surgery to re­move the mass.

Dam­age to her brain dur­ing the op­er­a­tion caused pos­te­rior fossa syn­drome, oth­er­wise known as mutism. It meant Char­lie had to re-learn all her de­vel­op­ments.

“It took six months be­fore she started talk­ing,” Ms Scaife said.

“She’s eat­ing but she can’t walk or sit up in­de­pen­dently. She’ll never be the same again.

“She will walk again, but I think

it will take at least a cou­ple more years be­fore that.”

Char­lie has un­der­gone ra­di­a­tion and chemo­ther­apy and spent 308 days in Princess Mar­garet Hos­pi­tal be­fore be­ing re­leased in April.

She is in re­mis­sion, is un­der­tak­ing home-based ther­a­pies and

faces MRIs ev­ery three months.

Make-A-Wish Aus­tralia Rock­ing­ham Man­durah branch vicepres­i­dent Chris­tine Hodge said it was won­der­ful to see Char­lie smil­ing again.

“Char­lie has en­dured a lot and we are so pleased Rock­ing­ham

Cen­tre could help us make this wish come true,” Mrs Hodge said.

“It has cer­tainly been a day to re­mem­ber for Char­lie and her fam­ily.”

Rock­ing­ham Cen­tre re­tail­ers gifted jew­ellery, toys, sta­tionery sets, lol­lies and a pam­per pack­age

af­ter hear­ing about Char­lie’s plight. Make-A-Wish Foun­da­tion pro­vided the Kmart shop­ping spree and lunch for the en­tire fam­ily, among other treats.

Char­lie said it ful­filled her dream to “shop, shop, shop ‘til I drop’.”

Char­lie Scaife, 10, gets the red-car­pet treat­ment with par­ents Danielle and Gary Scaife.

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