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  • I took this picture in the afternoon on Apr 12, 2012. This is the place that saves Ben's life.

    Ben had a medical appointment in the Long-term Follow-up Clinic at Piam Brown ward, the Regional Paediatric Oncology and Haematology Unit for Wessex, based on the top floor of Southampton General Hospital.

    At 13 months' old, Ben was hospitalised at Piam Brown Ward on Christmas eve, 2001.

    Ben suffered from a rare childhood disease called Langerhans’ Cells Histiocytosis (LCH). No one had ever heard of it before.

    We watched Teletubbies, Bob the Builder and Fireman Sam in the en-suite bedroom.

    We played games and did messy art in the play area. Ben's favourite toy was a mechanic grey cat.

    God makes kids terribly ill at a very young age, because God knows kids remember nothing bad.

    Ben, do you remember the needles, chemotherapy? No.

    Do you remember being starved for half a day before the operations? No.

    Being drowsy for the CT scan? No.

    Being sick? No.

    Tube forced down through the nose? No.

    Being immobilised with a hip spica cast? No.

    What do you remember, Ben?

    “You know, the cat, in the play room.”

    p/s: I am running a fund-raising event on June 16, 2012 for Piam Brown Ward. If you live locally and would like to donate cakes, cookies and other things, please contact me. Thank you.

    Ben is now 11 years old.
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