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Six people on smiling in the sunshine outdoors.
Tayen usually visits Charlton Farm with her mum, dad and brothers.
Eight-year-old Tayen and her family have been shielding at home to ensure she remains as safe and well as possible.

Since lockdown began, Tayen and her family have been shielding at home to ensure that she can continue to have her chemotherapy treatment as safely as possible. However, mum, Kali, explains how this hasn’t stopped them having some fun together!

“We are heading into week five of shielding or is it six? I can’t remember! Tayen is on chemo again for the fourth time so we are shielding for& her. We only leave the house once a week for treatment at the hospital.  

Being a family of six means it’s quite hectic and noisy here! Three teenage boys who don’t stop eating and trying to manage all of Tayen’s needs can be stressful. We are keeping busy by doing schoolwork in the mornings for a couple of hours and then, if the weather allows, we are outside in the garden (we are feeling very thankful we have one!).  

It’s been challenging to think outside of the box with regards to keeping Tayen’s stamina and mobility up. Understandably, she’s lost all of her therapies, which helped her immensely, so we’ve dug out the hot tub so she can maintain her water confidence. We’ve also raised her disability trike on axel stands so she can peddle in the garden and keep her legs moving without going into the community. However, I do think that all of our children will come out of this being master bakers; it’s like the Gilbert Bake Off here!

Our main challenge as a family is securing food deliveries. Being a larger family, we go through a lot of food and being able to get hold of fresh fruit and veg regularly has been difficult.

All four children are missing the normality of school although I’m very proud of how they have all adapted to being at home 24/7.

Kev and I have made a conscious effort to keep activities relevant to the weather. We’ve saved puzzles, Lego sets and movie days for when the weather won’t allow us outside. When it’s been nice, the children have slept in the tent, stargazed, toasted marshmallows and played badminton.

There are many, many emotions flying around between us and that’s also tough to manage.

I think we are coping well considering what’s happening. We have all naturally fallen into a routine as that’s helped us all.”