My son Simon was born on the 26th of December 1988, a first son and wonderful brother for Lisa. He was a normal little baby boy, healthy and ready to explore the new world he was in with his sister playing by his side.
That was until 1990 when he became ill and was admitted to hospital for investigations in to bone marrow failure. The Doctors initial thoughts were that he may have had Leukaemia, but it turned out to be severe Aplastic Anaemia. Its an odd thought, you wouldn’t wish Leukaemia on anyone, but for a time that is what we hoped for. With a survival rate of only 25%, Simon would have stood a better chance than with Aplastic Anaemia.
Aplastic Anaemia is a rare, serious blood disorder, due to failure of the bone marrow failure to produce blood cells. Like Leukaemia Aplastic Anaemia shows no bias it affects males and females in about equal numbers, Normally affecting those over 10, but more common in 20 – 40 year olds, the incidence of Aplastic Anaemia in Europe is 2 new cases per 1 million people each year. In Asia the incidence rate is two or three times greater. In the America 500-1,000 new cases are diagnosed each year.
Myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) are a rare group of blood disorders that occur as a result of improper development of blood cells within the bone marrow. It is sometimes difficult to distinguish Aplastic Anaemia from MDS which can develop into an acute Leukaemia.
Simon was treated at the famous Birmingham Children’s Hospital on the haematology / oncology wards. For 6 months, with the help of the Doctors and Nurses, and the support of my whole family, he battled against infections , viruses and low platelet levels. The treatment plan meant that Simon would need a bone marrow transplant, so this was scheduled, but he developed pneumonia prior to this. Simon fought hard, but sadly lost his life on 22nd February 1991, aged just 3 year 2 months.
Lisa was nearly 6 when she lost her brother, but has lots of lovely memories of a happy, smiley, white haired brother who loved to play games and adored Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles. Lisa, now grown up, has never forgotten her little brother.
She now has her own son.
FINLEY SIMON MEESON
It is hard for a mother to lose a child, especially one so young, my heart goes out to all the parents, brothers & sisters in the same situation we were in, the hardest thing in the world is to loose the ones you love most.
I am thankful for the efforts of the Doctors, Nurses and Scientists who are striving to offer better treatments. Each day stepping one step closer to finding that key that will unlock the cure for so many families.
Losing a child is something you never forget,
but time has helped me remember the happier memories I have of
my dear son, Simon.