Sad news from family who made the most of the time they had with their baby boy after he was diagnosed with terminal cancer.
Update 9 May
Family say goodbye to their beloved baby boy at just 23 weeks old.
Sheryl posted the sad news on Instagram, “It is with immense sadness that we share, our #littlewarriorthomas grew his angel wings yesterday night, 8th of May 2017 at 7:30pm.
He was surrounded by family and right next to his mummy and daddy when he passed away. He fought the good fight especially when he was only expected to live for only short amount of weeks after his diagnosis.
His baby sibling who we miscarried before him that had the same due date was also taken away from us the same date 2 years ago and they are now together with our loved ones who are looking down upon us. He’s no longer in pain is our only consolation.
We miss him so much everything hurts. Thank for all your kindness and support the last few months.”
A post shared by Sheryl Blanksby (mschikee) (@mschikee) on
We previously shared in February that Sheryl and Jon Blanksby’s son, Thomas, just 11 weeks old, was born with a skin lesion on his right arm that looked like a birthmark.
But after tests revealed a lump on his abdomen, Thomas was diagnosed with a malignant rhabdoid tumour and his family don’t know how long he has left.
‘There are tears and that immense pain of losing someone you love so much. We film him constantly and stare at him and kiss him,’ the couple told Daily Mail Australia.
‘We as a family are trying to cope the best way we can, but it has been very hard.’
Other than the mark on his arm, Thomas, who was born in November, showed no symptoms and was in no pain. He was a happy newborn baby.
But when he turned six weeks old, a doctor found a lump on Thomas’ abdomen, which an ultrasound would reveal was a large tumour over his kidney.
Doctors removed Thomas’ left kidney and discovered he had a malignant rhabdoid tumour.
The rare and aggressive form of cancer most commonly occurs in infants and toddlers, with only around 25 cases every year diagnosed in the US.
Rhabdoid tumours commonly first appear in the kidneys but can also originate in the soft tissues of the brain, before spreading to other parts of the body.
With a survival rate below 30 per cent no matter where the tumour originates, there is no documentation of a successful treatment.
Thomas’ family said doctors then discovered that his skin lesions were also rhabdoid tumours.
Tumours were also found in both of his lungs. An additional one on his hip bone also fractured his right femur bone.
The cancer had spread. There was nothing else the doctors could do.
Sheryl and Jon have not been given a time frame for how long Thomas will live, and can only work to make him as comfortable as possible.
They are now trying to make the most of the time they have left with Thomas, and hope to give him as normal of a life as possible – no matter how short.
The couple’s friends are raising money through a GoFundMe campaign so they can enjoy the time they have left with Thomas without the stress of hospital bills.
Although they will lose him soon, Sheryl and Jon said Thomas is teaching them that life is what’s truly important.
‘We often get caught up in our own little world of first problems and we sweat the small stuff, or complain about things that don’t matter,’ they said.
‘We forget how to be grateful of the things and life we have.’
‘We must live with a purpose, gratitude, and magnitude of love.’
We wish them all the strength in the world.
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