Jacobs Story

Jacob was born in the September 2004.  Amazing from a very early age, Jacob is incredibly sociable, caring, and has a complete endearing character, a complete pleasure to be around.

During the last 10 years Jacob has enjoyed spending time with family, friends and has loved sport.  To name just a few…….rugby, football, swimming, golf, cricket, tennis and cycling.  Jacob played rugby for the A Team in school and was a keen member at Stratford Upon Avon Rugby Club.

So, as of August 2014…

Jacob is amazingly close to his younger brother Oscar and his dog Lupo!  Jacob is a delight to cook for, with an amazingly healthy diet which he loves.  Jacob is surrounded by family, friends and generally life was fantastic.

Jacob Jacob

The start of the school term in September 2014

1st Day Back To School

During that afternoon we collected Jacob from the school with a headache.  We took Jacob home where he rested and Calpol was given, he slept well that night and went to school the next day.  We had another call from the school and collected him again and made an appointment with the Doctors.

The Doctor examined Jacob and said he had pulled a muscle in his neck and suggested some neck exercises to relieve the pressure and relax the muscles and more Calpol.

Jacob continued with the neck exercises over the weekend, the pain didn’t subside.

Monday 8th September 2014

We decided not to take Jacob into school that morning as there hadn’t been any improvement over the weekend.  Again another Doctors appointment was made, the only option was the Practise Nurse at such short notice.  I (Jacob’s mum) was laughed at when I requested a scan for Jacob for a more in-depth investigation as Jacob’s symptoms were completely out of character.  We were eventually referred to the Alexander Hospital in Redditch. (From experience please be assured that you know your child/children better then any GP/Nurse).

Jacob had a scan and bloods was taken at the Alexander Hospital that day.  We were told immediately after the scan that Jacob was being transferred as an emergency from Redditch Alexander Hospital by ambulance with a full resus medical team for the journey to Birmingham Children’s Hospital.  Something was showing on the scan that they weren’t happy with and that Birmingham Children’s Hospital had more specialist facilities.  We were rushed to Birmingham Children’s Hospital (BCH) with the blue lights flashing (Jacob chatting away in the back of the ambulance taking everything in his stride!).  That was then we both knew something was seriously wrong with our beautiful boy, panic had now started to set in.

We arrived at Birmingham Children Hospital and went straight to the High Dependency Unit.  The emotions running through our minds were of complete fear, what was wrong with our boy?  We were told that he was booked in for an emergency MRI and a CT scan in the morning.   The Ward Sister leaving her shift that night said ‘I’m off now for 2 weeks now, see you when I get back’…….surely she was talking to someone else, we wouldn’t be here in 2 weeks?

Panic phone calls to organise Oscar, Jacob’s younger brother were made to stay with his Grandparents as we were entering the ‘unknown’.  We knew Jacob would be staying in the night at BCH but we weren’t sure why, all we knew was is that something was serious wrong.


We stayed with Jacob all night, we sat and watched Jacob sleeping and when he did occasionally wake up with questions about what was going to happen and what was wrong with him we answered as truthfully as we could, all I can say is what a frightening night lay ahead of us as it was the complete ‘unknown’.

He is a true inspiration to us.


Tuesday 9th September 2014

Time for the MRI

That morning Jacob was prepared for the MRI, again the unknown for us…..we sat outside the room throughout the whole process, it was horrendous.  No one was allowed in the room with Jacob due to radiaton levels.  Jacob found the whole MRI experience traumatic, we listened to Jacob crying and whimpering throughout the whole process.  What 9 year old would be able to handle being locked in a small tunnel not being able to move with the sound of a jet engine in his ears for 2 hours.

Later that day we knew that we would he having a meeting to retrieve the information from the MRI.

AT 17:00 HOURS, our whole world would completely change forever.  The initial findings from the scan were about to be delivered to us.

Our little boy, our son, our healthy, active, sporty, amazing boy has a brain tumour and hydrocephalus.  We were in complete shock and couldn’t comprehend the news we were being told.  How this had happened and why?

This was not real, surely there was a mistake.  They have the wrong scan’s, they are confusing Jacob’s with somebody else’s.

Heartbreaking….sadly not…….

Next a meeting was with the surgeon.  He explained that the tumour was creating pressure within the brain ventricles (hydrocephalus).  He suggested emergency brain surgery for the following day (on Jacobs 10th birthday) to relieve the pressure and a biopsy of the tumour as Jacob as ‘a ticking time bomb’.

Jacob would have a 8-10 inch insertion across the top of Jacobs head/skull to retrieve a biopsy (to find out what tumour he has) and relieve the pressure in his brain and restore the natural flow of the water/brain stem fluid.  This was delivered in a very calm and matter a fact way, time was against Jacob and us.

Jacob immediately went Nil By Mouth and was schedule for emergency surgery the first thing next morning.

That night we both just watched Jacob sleeping, all night.  Sleep just wasn’t an option for us.


Wednesday 10th September 2014 – Jacobs 10th Birthday.

The morning came round very quickly everything had happened like a whirlwind we didn’t know if it was real.  Jacob was due to go through to theatre at 9:00 am.

It was our little boys 10th birthday, he was taken into surgery within 10 minutes of being born 10 years earlier, it was a devastating and we feared the worst.

We walked Jacob through to the anaesthetic room, we tried to stay positive and strong as possible for our little boy.  Again the unknown was happening, we were in floods of tears and as soon as they put him to sleep, we couldn’t control ourselves.

What were we going to do now he had gone through…

10 hours passed and Jacob was still in the operation theatre, the panic we felt was uncontrollable.  We sat and waited, every ten minutes felt like 2 hours and the worry was increasing every second.

Jacob Jacob

Eventually we where called into the Recovery Room where Jacob was slowly regaining consciousness. He was still sleepy and disorientated when we arrived.  Jacob’s surgeon arrived and stated that everything had gone according to plan, he has stables and stitches and staples in his head.  Also at the back of his head as the head clamp had broke and his head was dropped which had caused another wound (9 staples worth). Looking back, it was awful.  We were so elated that he was alive and he said it went well, we parked that news of his head being dropped at the back of our minds.  At this point, the realisation for a speedy recovery was out of the window.

We were told that the biopsy would be sent off for more investigation, we would have to wait a week to find out what tumour Jacob has.  The rest of the tumour was too dangerous to remove due to the location in Jacob’s brain.

Jacob Jacob

INOPERABLE……just think about that word…….something we’ve never had to think about before, what do you mean, you can’t remove it all? Inoperable tumour in the brain?

Questions, questions……..heartbreak, helplessness

Our lives fell to the ground and shattered into millions of pieces, our World fell apart.

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