Over time more issues presented. Just little things, like constipation and other small things. They were just put down to her feeding issues and not getting enough nutrients in.
"I was constantly back and forth to the hospital trying for more answers, telling them they needed to look deeper. That there is more going on that they were missing and I was scared it was going to be too late by the time they picked it up.” Kareena, Kalynda's Mum
She had dairy intolerance and we switched to the right formula, yet she was still losing weight and getting closer and closer to falling off the charts. When she was seven months old, I took Kalynda yet again to the children’s hospital. Again, we were sent home blaming her feeding issues and my anxieties. We were again discharged.
"Over the next week I started noticing little things. Slowly Kalynda wasn’t holding herself in sitting position as straight, her head was leaning to the side. Then suddenly she couldn’t sit unassisted. Next she couldn’t even do tummy time and put her head up in tummy time. Unfortunately I had myself convinced it was all in my head. I waited until the next day when my husband was home and asked him ‘surely you’re seeing this? This isn’t in my head, is it?
He got us straight in the car and took us to our nearest hospital, who sent us to the children’s hospital four hours away again." - Kareena, Kalynda's Mum
This time was a completely different experience. A doctor came and got us straight away, actually listened. By this time, Kalynda had lost all complete movement in her body, basically had no feeling. The only body part she had movement in was her arms and that movement was very jerky and sporadic, so she didn’t have whole control of them. She was unable to lay flat on her back, as she couldn’t breath, which she’d had trouble with since birth, but was put down to her speedy labour.
Doctors booked her for an MRI, but decided to do x-ray to ensure her lungs and heart could cope under general.
"Within half an hour, two doctors and a social worker were in our room to tell me that a mass had been found in her whole chest cavity, pushing her heart and lungs to the side, pushing out her ribs and compressing her spine. It was intermediate grade Neuroblastoma." - Kareena, Kalynda's Mum
From that point on, things were a whirlwind. There were multiple meetings with doctors, scans, and a Picc line was inserted to start emergency chemo. We were moved down to Perth, four hours from home, away from my husband and my two young boys (3 & 4). They told us it was likely for a minimum of 6-12 months.
Kalynda responded amazingly to her four rounds of chemo and we were able to go home after four months. Her doctors were amazed with her response and the fact that she never stopped smiling, the whole way through.
Now, Kalynda is a normal, happy 20 month old toddler. When she was diagnosed at seven months, she was the size of a small three month old. Now, she’s only slightly smaller than others her age. She’s just started walking and is full of mischief, smiles and love. She continues to amaze us every single day and we are so very thankful to have her.