“Keech has given Anoosha her wings and enabled me to be mum again."Anoosha, 6, had spent so much time in hospital, mum Amiee felt she hadn’t had the chance to be a child. At Keech, Anoosha can be a normal little girl and Amiee can simply be ‘mum’
“When we found out I was pregnant with Anoosha, we were over the moon,” said Amiee. “The pregnancy itself was normal, she was born by C section and, after 48 hours, I took her home to introduce her to her very excited brother and sister.
But, after four days, Anoosha stopped feeding and started to turn blue – there was obviously something wrong. After blood tests and a heart echo, we were told she had holes in her heart and blood was flowing the wrong way. The doctor told us our daughter would need open heart surgery when she got to two years old or 10 kilos - whichever came first – but, until that time, she would have to be tube fed.
At four months old, though, Anoosha went into heart failure and was rushed into surgery for an emergency operation. It was the most terrifying thing, seeing her lying there - she looked so tiny (was so tiny!).
We’d hoped life might return to ‘normal’ but, a month later, Anoosha was diagnosed with a twisted bowel; at 16 months, we found she had rickets so she was placed in a full body cast; then, at three years old, her colon had to be removed. She’s also living with intestine failure. A multi-organ transplant is our last and only option.
When I first heard about Keech Hospice Care, I thought it was a different Keech to the one I knew - a place people go for end-of-life care. Taking Anoosha there for the first time, I was scared and, walking into the children’s unit, Anoosha hid behind me.
But when I said she could go and play, it was like she’d got her wings. She was free! We now visit the hospice twice a week and Anoosha so looks forward to it. She’s often dressed and ready to go by 6am! She looks so happy while she’s there and seeing her playing like any normal child is priceless. It also means I get to be mum and not just Anoosha’s carer.
I don’t know what the future holds for Anoosha, when the call for the transplant will come, but I do know Keech will continue to be there for us.