When little baby Thomas was born, he had a lesion on his right arm that doctors thought was a birthmark.
But at 6 weeks, it was revealed that something much more serious was going on. Thomas had a lump on his abdomen, which was a large tumour on his kidney.
The cancer he has is rare and aggressive, with a survival rate of less than 30% – but mum Sheryl, dad John and big brother William are making the most of the time they have with little Thomas.
Sharing this beautiful photo on Instagram, Sheryl said:
“#Throwback to when we were on our holiday. I was getting ready in the bathroom and husband was in the kitchen.
‘The kids were quiet, especially Mr preschooler. You know the rules about when kids are quiet. I tiptoed to the lounge with my camera ready to catch anything they are doing.
“I was expecting my baby to be covered in Nutella or something but instead I saw this. My preschooler is telling his baby brother “Kuya (big brother) is here. Everything is ok.”
Just wow ?
Sheryl has started a blog to share what she and her family are going through, and some of her words are just heartbreaking:
“I can’t even begin to describe the pain I feel each time I look at his precious face.
“My heart breaks for every big smile he gives me because I know how much I will miss it when it’s all gone, and when you think my heart can’t take it anymore, it shatters even more when he gives his begging look when he’s in pain.”
“I wake up wishing it’s all just a bad dream and then I look at Thomas and I know it’s all real. I start to cry.”
Sheryl’s story – and this beautiful photo in particular – has been shared around the world and received so many comments.
One mum said:
“I saw your story online and I just wanted to say how sorry I am about your beautiful boy. I have a son with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, a 100% terminal muscle wasting disease.
“He is lucky in that he still has a few years left (hopefully), but the pain of knowing you will have to bury your child (in my case, my oldest child) never goes away and increases with each birthday.
“I just wanted to send you a wave of love, support, and understanding. xxxxxx”
“I just wanted to let you know that this picture even made newspapers here in Belgium… I was heartbroken when I read your story, can’t imagine what it must be like so I wish you and your family lots of courage and love to get through what’s unavoidably coming. ? “
We have to say – we just can’t imagine how hard this situation is for Sheryl and her family.
We hope they enjoy the precious moments they do have with little Thomas – he is obviously a much-loved child.
Sending hugs and prayers to the family ?