Like most teenagers, my son Jake was a very social, independent boy before an operation to remove a brain tumour caused his brain injury.
Over the years, Jake complained of bad headaches and would often throw up as a result of them. At first, I didn’t think anything of it. I thought it must be a bug or a bad case of food poisoning. Jake would take paracetamol to stop the sickness and that would be it until the next time. He went to the doctors a few times, but we were told he had low iron levels and nothing serious was flagged.
In January 2019, the headaches and sickness didn’t stop, so I took Jake for another blood test. I also took him to the opticians as Jake’s football coaches had noticed he was having problems with his vision. At the appointment, the optician saw there was pressure on his nerve.
They referred us straight to Moorfields Eye Hospital where we had a fast track appointment the next day. There, Jake had a CT- scan and this was when my world was turned upside down. They found a brain tumour.
Two days after finding the brain tumour, Jake had an operation at Great Ormond Street Hospital to remove it. When he woke up, he couldn’t walk or talk. He was in such a state and was being fed by a tube.
But slowly, he started to come around. It was 10 days after his operation when he began to talk again. He was moved to University College Hospital (UCL) in London where he had 30 rounds of radiotherapy.