Little Evie Atkinson had her parents’ permission to make all the noise she wanted at Christmas.
Last year their lively little girl had faded to a shadow of her former self – quiet, withdrawn and sapped of energy as she fought newly-diagnosed cancer.
Now, thanks to life-saving treatment and her own courage, Evie, from Framfield Road, Uckfield, is well on the road to recovery. Her sparkle has returned and she had a wonderful Christmas at home with mum Emma, dad Tom and big sister Isabella, seven.
Tom said: “I think we’ve already got the best Christmas present of all – our noisy, bouncy, happy little girl back!”
Evie’s courage won her a Little Star award presented by Cancer Research UK in partnership with TK Maxx.
Evie became unwell in May, 2012. She and Isabella had a tummy bug. Isabella bounced back but Evie didn’t.
Tom said: “That was so unusual for Evie that we took her to the doctor the same day.”
A biopsy confirmed a growth was neuroblastoma, a cancer of nerve cells left behind from a baby’s development in the womb. Evie underwent chemo, major surgery, a stem cell transplant and radiotherapy. Tom went on: “It was only when one of the doctors said after she recovered ‘That was a close one!’ that we realised how near we had been to losing her.”
Thankfully the rest of Evie’s treatment went well. She responded to the drugs she was given and didn’t suffer any bad reactions or side-effects. Her last set of scans were clear and she is now cancer free.