Charlotte didn't sleep much during the night. I think somehow she knew what was happening. The nurses came to prepare her at 7.30am and Rod and I took her to theatre at around 8am. There she was checked again and we put on our robes and hats to enter theatre until she was to be anaesthetised. She laughed hysterically when she saw Rod in the theatre gown and hat, which made us feel better.

 

The neurosurgeon (Erica, our angel!) came in to check on Charlotte and us, too. The neurological team at Randwick have been brilliant! We carried her in to be sedated and within seconds she was laughing uncontrollably - the valium had kicked in! At that point I wished I'd had some of that, too! She was hilarious and the theatre staff and doctors were all laughing hysterically with her. A light moment, in what had been a fairly exhausting few days.

 

She went out immediately and we left the theatre for what was to be an enormous wait. We passed the day with the support of our family and friends, who brought food, conversation, a visit to the pub for lunch, more conversation and before we knew it it was 6pm. They were still in surgery. We just kept thinking no news is good news. One of the nurses came out to tell us that it had been going quite well. It wasn't a very bloody tumour, they had taken the majority of it and still had a fair bit to go. Charlotte had been fairly stable throughout and they were to keep going. The next few hours were very difficult. At 11pm (15 hours

later) the neurosurgeon appeared. She looked tired, as you can imagine.

A brilliant woman who went through the day's proceedings.

 

Charlotte's tumour was large and they managed to remove the section in the right frontal lobe area. However, it did go deeper than the MRI had shown and reaches a lot closer to her brain stem than she had hoped.

They made a decision not to take that latter section out as it was very late, it was going to be difficult and was in a crucial area of her brain. Preliminary pathology during the operation revealed many anomalies and they were not able to ascertain the type or nature of the the tumor. There were obvious markers that suggested benign traits, but similar markers that suggested malignancy. Tumors in 0-2 year olds are the most difficult to ascertain and it will take between 3 days and 3 weeks to receive official pathology on the tumour. It is not until then that the surgeons will decide to go in again and remove the rest OR to commence chemotherapy, etc, etc.

 

At 2am this morning (16 Aug) she was stable and woke partially and pulled at her ventilator line. A good sign! She is moving her legs, arms and is doing well, all things considered. She is having more tests and another MIR today to check how much tumour remains. She is one tough little girl! We love her and hope that she can hget through this.

 

Thank you for your thoughts and concerns. Thank you to all those who have sent food, care packages, flowers, text messages, gifts for Charlotte and love. What we will continue to need are your positive thoughts and prayers.

 

Love,

 

Beck, Rod and Madeleine xxoo