“I wish to have a pirate party on a pirate ship”
4 years old, Hampshire
Langerhans cell histiocytosis
Sebbie's mum Kristina had an inkling something was wrong, but never expected it to be anything like LCH. It was during a paediatric appointment in April 2015 that the doctor told Kristina the devastating news that her son had an extremely rare cancer-like condition.
The doctor explained that the reason why his eye had been closing was because there was a tumour on his skull, and that he had to begin chemotherapy straight away.
"“It was a horrific time, it was probably the worst time when you have that diagnosis, because your perfect little baby isn’t perfect anymore.”"
After the diagnosis, doctors began treating Sebbie with the lowest dose of chemotherapy at first, along with steroids, before a more intensive form of chemotherapy every three weeks. He will continue to have treatment until he is almost six years old.
Despite everything he has been through, Sebbie is full of energy and a ‘cheeky little monkey!’ according to his mum Kristina. He absolutely loves pirates – his favourite programme is Swashbuckle, a show all about pirates, and he’s nicknamed himself Captain Barnacle!
He also loves making his own pirate ships (complete with anchor and sails) and even made a boat out of anything he could get his hands on whilst in hospital!
It came as no surprise when Sebbie turned to us to grant his One True Wish, that he wished to have his very own pirate party – on a real ship!
Wishgranter Nicola got to work to plan a very special pirate party on a ship for Sebbie and all his friends and family.
Meanwhile, Sebbie had an exciting time in the lead up to his wish – he was invited down to the Spinnaker Tower in Portsmouth where he got to press a magic button and summon the pirate ship from the seven seas for his wish!
After summoning the pirates, BBC South Today also found out about Sebbie’s story and kindly sent him even more pirate goodies to play with. The perfect excuse to practice his best pirate impression!
Then in October 2017, Sebbie’s One True Wish came true.
On the day, Sebbie and his family travelled in style in a limo from their home to Portsmouth Marina, where there was a real life ship called the Lord Nelson comissioned by the Jubilee Sailing Trust, waiting to welcome Captain Barnacle on-board.
After being greeted by pirate entertainer ‘Captain Jax Sparrow’ and having his own private tour of the ship, Sebbie then welcomed his friends on board for the party to begin!
Kristina said, “Sebbie was incredibly excited. He took the lead quite naturally and decided for us to all follow him down the pontoon saying ‘I’m Captain Barnacle!’”
Lots of pirate antics and party games followed, including pass the parcel, ‘Captain Says’ and of course a treasure hunt around the ship!
How Sebbie's wish helped
Kristina added, “He suddenly just came alive. Between doing the party games and having his party banquet, that was my true Sebbie. It was just beautiful.”
Since July, Sebbie has gone back to maintenance chemo. Kristina described this as “still tough but not as tough” and told us that Sebbie’s wish has been a nice way of celebrating that he’s out of the really tough times.
"It’s been nice to have something to look forward to and something that’s different and takes us out of the normal routine of medication, scans, and everything else we have to do."
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