Christmas brings joy to Amelia, 3, after beating cancer

Sarah Old with daughter Amelia Lewis, aged three, who has recently recovered from cancer, at their Ipswich home. 

Sarah Old is celebrating Christmas with daughter Amelia Lewis, aged three, who has recently recovered from cancer, at their Ipswich home. - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown/Archant

There's joy this Christmas for three-year-old Amelia Lewis, as she celebrates at home with her family in Ipswich.

The youngster underwent months of cancer treatment at Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge - but in October her parents, Sarah Old and Matthew Lewis, were able to celebrate the news that she is now free of the disease.

Sarah Old with her daughter Amelia Lewis, aged three, who has recently recovered from cancer. 

Sarah Old with her daughter Amelia Lewis, aged three, who has recently recovered from cancer. - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown/Archant

Mum Sarah said: "Amelia is doing really well. She's back at nursery and they had a little Christmas party last week, which she loved.

"She has been loving everything about Christmas, and has been really looking forward to Father Christmas coming, and putting out a carrot for the reindeer. She told me she was going to try to keep one eye open to see him!"

Amelia Lewis, three, enjoying a splash in the rain. 

Amelia Lewis, three, enjoying a splash in the rain. - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown/Archant

Amelia had already met Santa on a visit to Marsh Farm children's adventure park in Essex, which was funded by the Suffolk charity AJ's Legacy

"It was really nice there," Sarah said. "The charity knew we had a bit of a rough time last Christmas, because Amelia had just been diagnosed."

Amelia Lewis on a pre-Christmas trip to Marsh Farm children's adventure park in Essex,

Amelia Lewis on a pre-Christmas trip to Marsh Farm children's adventure park in Essex, - Credit: Sarah Old

This year it's very different, and the lively toddler has been able to celebrate with older sister and brother Ellie and Ben, although, due to coronavirus,  it is a small celebration, as for everyone. Sarah said: "We are spending Christmas on our own, without seeing any other family, but we are just so grateful that she's healthy."

In October, Amelia marked the end of months of treatment by ringing the bell at Addenbrooke’s. Her mum said the consultant was really happy with her, with no evidence of disease.

She is now having regular scans and reviews, with her next scan due in January. Sarah said Amelia has had a few temperature spikes since her treatment finished, and has had to go into hospital for checks each time, but is doing really well. 

Amelia Lewis meeting Santa on a trip to Marsh Farm children's adventure park in Essex

Amelia Lewis meeting Santa on a trip to Marsh Farm children's adventure park in Essex - Credit: Sarah Old

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Amelia was an energetic, happy two-year-old when her parents noticed a lump on her side last year. They received the devastating news in November 2019 that she had a rare form of kidney cancer.

She underwent two operations, the second of which took eight hours and saw surgeons remove the 12cm wide tumour and a kidney. Amelia then had eight rounds of radiotherapy, followed by 28 weeks of chemotherapy with three different drugs.

Sarah Old enjoying Christmas in Ipswich with her daughter Amelia Lewis, aged three, who has recently recovered from cancer.

Sarah Old enjoying Christmas in Ipswich with her daughter Amelia Lewis, aged three, who has recently recovered from cancer. - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown/Archant

Although Amelia is at home this Christmas, the family is thinking of other children who are still receiving treatment.

Sarah said: "I have made a donation to the CT unit at Addenbrooke's, because there are still a lot of children who are spending Christmas in hospital, and they are close to our hearts." If anyone is inspired to make a donation, she asked them to support Addenbrooke's or AJ's Legacy.

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