Published: 00:01, 04 July 2014
A terminally ill girl’s dream of being a bridesmaid came true after she put her parents’ marriage on her bucket list.
Rosie Staunton, five, was given just 18 months to live last July after doctors discovered she had a huge, inoperable brain tumour.
She made a list of all the things she wanted to do with her sister Leila, eight, including trips to Disneyland and the seaside.
But her heart was set on seeing mum and dad, Laura and Ryan, tying the knot so she could wear a real princess dress.
After 13 years together, the childhood sweethearts did just that and walked down the aisle with Rosie as bridesmaid.
Laura, 30, from Crayford, said: “We’ve been together for so long but it was just one of things that we never got round to.
“With everything going on with Rosie, we have been focused on that but actually it was so important for her to be there and in our photographs. We are so happy that we managed to do that, and fulfil her dream.”
Rosie fulfilled her ultimate wish of seeing her parents get married at a ceremony at the Holiday Inn, Bexley, at the end of last month.
Former nursery nurse Laura said: “She loved the music, the party, and all the girly things that went with it. She just loved the whole day.
“It was a small intimate day, but all the people we wanted to be there were there.”
Rosie had not suffered any ill health until March last year when her parents were unable to wake her up after she suffered a huge brain haemorrhage in the middle of the night.
Doctors at Darent Valley Hospital discovered a large mass on her brain and she was transferred to King’s College Hospital, London, where neurosurgeons operated for five hours.
Sadly, an MRI scan revealed Rosie had suffered brain damage and would probably never walk and talk again.
She spent 18 days in an induced coma before waking and, thanks to therapy and lots of determination, she learned to say a few words again and even managed to smile.
However, any dreams of a recovery were dashed when a scan to investigate a droopy eye revealed a huge brain tumour –the cause of the bleed – in June last year.
It was tangled up with the middle of her brain and touching her nervous system, meaning any intervention could send her into a permanent coma.
Laura, who is now Rosie’s full-time carer, said: “The night it happened I was in such a panic and I couldn’t really believe it was happening.
“There were moments when we didn’t know if she was going to wake up at all. It was horrible.”
The brave girl is enduring chemotherapy and radiotherapy to prolong her life, but it is thought she has just have months to live.
She now struggles to talk, but with the help of Leila, she drew up a bucket list of amazing trips she wanted to do.
As well as enjoying the wedding day, the family have been to Disneyland, and Laura and Ryan, 30, a mechanical engineer on the London Underground, are fundraising so they can fulfil more of Rosie’s list, which includes a trip to Peppa Pig World.
Laura added: “She can’t do anything without help but she is happy, and just loves her sister and having people play with her and read books with her.
“Instead of getting down about it all the time we just want to enjoy the time we have left.
“We want to look back and remember the good times that we had even when we were going through a really bad time.”
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