We were hoping for a week at home and some peace for Charlotte but that has not panned-out. Rod woke on Sunday morning at 5.20 am ready for his Sunday paddle when Charlotte woke too. She had a fever and was vomitting. So, bags were loaded in the car and off they went to Emergency again. I later swapped with Rod who went home for a quick sleep before night shift. Charlotte was really unwell. She had high fevers and was listless - not like our Charlie! By that evening her temperature was spiking 40 degrees, her bpm was 200 and she was screaming and delerious. This continued all night until 4am when the panadol finally seemed to have some effect and she slept for an hour and a half. Whilst it was an horrendous night the next day was only going to get worse.

Her portacath (used to administer chemo, take bloods, give antibiotics through) was leaking again. When I spoke to the nurse about it she was concerned and came back with a team so we could de-access Charlotte and put a new needle in. This is painful and upsetting for Charlie and was done four times throughout the day. After putting the new access needle in blood began pouring out the previous hole which should reseal itself immediately. They began to realise something was really wrong. They cleaned her up and bandaged the new needle and kept the antibiotic drip running. Charlotte was exhausted and fell asleep on my lap. The site was still leaking and she and I were drenched in saline drip and antibiotics. At this point the Team had paged the Surgeon to come down and check Charlotte's port and deaccess her once again.

The nurses and peadiatric-oncologists were excellent. Charlotte was then taken to Emergency surgery where they removed the port, last night. They were unable to put a new port in as they need to test for internal infection and also assess the portecath. The surgeon showed us the port and it had been punctured all the way through. They are sending is off to the manufacturers. All in all, it is looking faulty. It has given us trouble from day one and could really have contributed to Charlotte's infection too. We are thankful this all happened before chemo on Friday. It would have been a serious issue if cytotoxic fluid had leaked on her skin or internally.

How much more can she handle? Well she still manages to smile which is gorgeous and faith restoring for Rod and I. We are truly exhausted emotionally and physically and can not imagine how much harder the rest of the year of chemo is going to be if this is only week 8???!!!???? Once the Doctors are happy that there is no sign of infection Charlotte will have to have another operation this week to insert a new portacath. Without the port she can not have chemo. Luckily, her platelet and white blood cell count was good enough for her to have the operation yesterday. She also had to have a haemoglobin transfusion as her levels were quite low.

Despite the painful day there was a moment of light relief. At lunch time Charlotte was exhausted and fell asleep in her cot, Papa fell asleep in the parents bed and very tired after her swimming assessment, Madeleine went for a nap in the spare cot in the room - AAAGHHH! peaceful at last. Mum and I just laughed, as they all slept and left the room for a much needed cup of tea!

Love Beck and Rod xxoo