Alice was just 7 months old when she was diagnosed with stage 4 high-risk neuroblastoma, a tumour that had already started to spread. Now aged 2, she is currently in remission and loving life!
Nicknamed Ali Bally by her family, Alice has an intense love and zest for life, her family describes her as being “pretty crazy, in a good way”.
When Ali is not doing her favourite things; picking flowers and attending parties with her dad she is playing with her favourite toy, dolls. Ali’s dad told us that dolls are Ali’s biggest obsession and you will usually find her playing with her collection alongside her sister. She also loves going swimming and to the playground, always spreading sunshine wherever she goes with her exuberant and bubbly personality.
Journeying through serious illness of a child is heartbreaking and challenging for parents but Ali’s parents have found Ali and her siblings to be a source of strength along the way. Ali’s strength and perseverance throughout her treatments has been inspiring for them. Seeing her now thrive and enjoy life alongside her siblings has empowered them to keep positive.
Ali’s dad said the support of their community has been amazing along the way, “We are lucky that we have such amazing family and friends that have supported us through everything.”
He believes that awareness is the key to supporting families, by creating a greater understanding of what goes on in the Oncology ward in the community, families will have a smoother journey through the challenges. Ali’s family had no idea where the journey would take them but they hope that in the future there will be more transparency for everyone in the community.
The ride is never ending for Ali’s family and others on the same journey. There will always be a constant worry about Ali’s health, whether she will relapse and what the effects of her treatments will be.
For now, Ali is a happy 2 year old surrounded by her dolls, spreading her sunshine and covering the world in glitter at every opportunity.
Ali’s dad shared this advice with us for other parents:
“Educate yourself on what your child is facing and their treatment. Surround yourself with supportive, loving, caring and reliable people and try to take each day as it comes. You will find a new normal. Enjoy every little moment with your child, even if it is in a hospital room.”
You can purchase prints of Alice’s artwork here– all proceeds help us to support more kids like Alice.
| Sharon Pegrum