About this blog

About this blog

The whole process of dealing with a cancer diagnosis can seem utterly terrifying and incredibly isolating. Following our daughter’s leukaemia diagnosis I felt compelled to use our own experiences to explain some of the many impacts that cancer has on a young person’s life and the way it affects so many people around them. Blogs written by Rachel

  • Patient Name: Suki
  • Cancer Type: Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia
  • Age when diagnosed: 4

Beads of Courage

29th July 2019

Powerful tool

The Beads of Courage are such a clever and powerful tool throughout Suki’s treatment so far. Receiving a bead each time a procedure takes place in hospital, or when a nurse visits, is very much part of the medical routine; “Have bloods taken, sit down with the nurse and count out my new beads”. There is something strangely therapeutic about adding them to the string. We (I!) am ever so slightly obsessive about them being in chronological order. We have even gone to the trouble of having dog tags engraved to break down the months. They have become a significant part of all she continues to go through.

1,071 beads

So far Suki has 1,071 beads, amongst them are… 146 black for each blood test 16 red for each blood or platelet transfusion 19 pink for each general anaesthetic 70 yellow for every hospital stay.

Something we look back on with an element of wonder

To be able to look back at every procedure. To be able to count up each colour. To be able to compare month on month, year on year. To be able to reflect on every single bead and its significance. Suki is incredibly proud of her beads, even though still in active treatment, already they are something we look back on with an element of wonder, pride and astonishment of all she has endured so far.   This article was reproduced by with permission from the author Rachel and was originally published on her Facebook and Instagram page. Want to share your story? Please email stories@childrenwithcancer.org.uk
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