A brave mum has come up with a musical way of turning a family trauma into a chance to help other people.
Carrie Campbell and her brother-in-law Paul Stanworth from Southgate have organised a concert to raise awareness of haemophilia after her baby son was diagnosed with the condition.
The lives of Carrie and her husband Stuart were changed forever in 2011 when eight-month-old Liam was rushed to hospital with what doctors feared to be meningitis.
The tot underwent a lumber puncture and a head scan, which revealed a brain haemorrhage – a bleed to his brain.
After several agonising hours of tests, Carrie and Stuart were told Liam actually had severe haemophilia.
Carrie said: “It turns out I’m a carrier of the gene and he was unfortunate to have it passed on.
“I was absolutely gutted beyond belief when they told me. I had guilt more than anything because I felt I had influenced it and ‘how did it happen’ and ‘why us’.
“You go through a grieving period of losing the son you thought you had. It was a roller coaster of emotions.”
Liam, who will be three in February, does not produce the blood clotting protein Factor VIII and Carrie has to administer daily doses via a port under his skin.
He is on his third port after two became infected and had to be removed – but without the protein, he runs the risk of internal and external bleeding.
Carrie said: “He doesn’t understand the condition but he is aware that he’s different and has funny blood, as he calls it, and might get funny bruising.
“He seems to know his limitations and is careful.”
Carrie teamed up with Paul to raise awareness of the condition and of both The Haemophilia Society and The Evelina Children’s Hospital, which have helped the family come to terms with Liam’s illness.
She said: “The Haemophilia Society have put us in touch with other families and other people going through this.
“It helps us feel we’re not alone.
“It’s the lack of awareness. I know there are other people who are in the position we were and may not know about The Haemophilia Society.
“It’s about making people aware of the condition. With Liam going to pre-school, you have the fears of the condition as well. People think it’s about bleeding to death.”
With the idea of a family oriented charity gig agreed upon, Paul, who is one half of the acoustic duo Two Tics, put out the call to local bands to take part. So far, six acts have agreed to appear.
The event will be held on Saturday January 25 from noon to 6pm at the Goffs Park Social Club. Entry is by donation.
Log on to www.justgiving.com/Carrie-Campbell1