To raise funds to allow Derek aged 8 from Tyne and Wear to receive the treatment and therapies he needs in order for him to lead a rich and fulfilled life.
My Mam and Dad had 4 older children John, Rebecca, Anthony and Joesph. Our family of 6 was now a family of 9. Yes, that’s right, Mam was expecting triplets!
On the 14th July 2011 we made our grand entrance – Terri, Derek and Daniel, 3 tiny miracles weighing just over 2lb. This is where my journey begins. I spent 5 weeks in hospital fighting to stay alive as my lungs collapsed not once but twice.
At 12 months of age my parents were told I had cerebral palsy, may never walk and, if I did, it wouldn’t be good and I will most likely need a wheelchair. They were also told I may never be able to participate in sports either!
As I grew older I was gradually able to move around, although the only way I could sit and walk was on my knees. Terri and Daniel would go on their knees so we would be the same. This caused a lot of problems. I couldn’t straighten my legs, I’d always have cuts and bruises and most nights I’d have my Mam and Dad up during the night because I was in so much pain.
An operation called SDR was my best option. However, it cost a lot of money and the whole community rallied together to help me, and we managed to raise the funds I needed to get it done. On the 2nd October 2014 Dr Park performed the SDR surgery and I spent 5 weeks in America working with some amazing physiotherapists to get me stronger.
My Dad was waiting at the airport for me and as the doors opened, I walked to my dad for the 1st time! Nearly 5 years on I am doing well. Sara my physiotherapist had been by side the whole time. She has always encouraged me to do my best and I wouldn’t be where I am today without her help. I have also tried swimming and football but my favourite is my Brazilian Jujitsu. I train at the Dungeon and at home with my big brothers and sisters and received my first stripe on my belt on June 19th. Trust me, they do not come easy!
Physio plays a huge part in my progress. However this does come at a cost. If you can help in any way big or small, it all helps.