Amelia’s Christmas adventure

Amelia shares her blog on her trip to The Enchanted Journey of light, with Bleu, her Emotional Support Dog.

Amelia and Bleu

Published: December 2020.

I am Amelia. I have an ABI (acquired brain injury) after becoming ill with ADEM (acute disseminated encephalomyelitis) in 2018 when I was 8 years old.

Sometimes I get very angry, although it’s not on purpose, and one person that helps me a lot is my dog Bleu. She’s is a one year old beagle full of energy, and she calms me down when I feel stressed or angry. She comes straight over and licks me, and stroking her and cuddling her makes me happy.

We decided to take Bleu on a camper weekend to Norfolk to visit The Enchanted Journey of Light. I went with my parents and my sister Sienna, in Henry the 1960s camper.Amelia and lights

After a fun, and slightly bumpy journey down the M11, we arrived in Norfolk, and found a place to plug in and sleep for the night. We then wrapped up warm, and headed in the dark to Thursford, which is a museum that has the world’s largest collection of steam engines and organs. I wasn’t sure what to expect, only that we needed to put on our Christmas Jumpers (Bleu included with her Minnie Mouse Santa jumper) and get in the festive spirit to visit a light show. 

When we arrived the staff that greeted us were very helpful, and they were very polite letting Bleu come into the venue. The excitement of the lights and the journey can sometimes make me grumpy and very stressed. Normally that makes me snappy and angry, especially with my sister, and this would take over my mood and I wouldn’t be able to enjoy the evening out. But having Bleu with me calms me down, and I was able to enter the venue feeling excited and ready to take it all in.

What we saw was absolutely magical, apart from the part when Bleu thought a giant mechanical dog was real and she barked at it trying to protect me. Everyone thought it was very funny.

We saw steam engines, and enormous organs, as well as mechanical Christmas scenes. But when we went outside, we were met with the most magical and fantastic light display. It was unbelievable, a sea of silk animals and flowers lighting up the night sky which was also extraordinary beautiful. 

Even Bleu the dog was mesmerised by it all.Amelia  and sister

Amelia’s update

You can read more about Amelia here. Amelia received support from The Children's Trust Brain Injury Community Service in 2018.

This Christmas, as well as writing a blog for us, Amelia has updated us on her life in general. 

Amelia said: “Since my illness I have been working hard on managing my emotions and focusing on tasks at school and in after school classes. 

“This year I have worked very hard at my ballet, and even learned the sugar plum fairy dance for Christmas. One day I would like to be a ballerina like my big sister Georgia.”

Good luck Amelia – and thanks for sharing your blog and update!

Encephalitis: Amelia and Kelly

Amelia was eight years old when she was diagnosed with ADEM, a rare type of autoimmune encephalitis. Mum Kelly shares their experience of brain injury.

Share your story

Share your family's story. First-hand experiences are invaluable for families caring for a child with a brain injury.

Amelia in the garden

Support in your community

The Children's Trust Brain Injury Community Service provides specialist goal-orientated neurorehabilitation delivered in the child's environment. Our ultimate goal is to maximise the child's participation in everyday life.