It was just supposed to be flu. But her illness turned into something life-threatening, depriving a family of one beautiful young girl.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on December 3, 2021. It has since been updated.
Watching the child you nurtured in your womb, held in your arms, and loved with every fiber of your being, slowly lose the battle against death, can be a sort of death in itself for you. As a parent, you don't expect to outlive your children. But Alex Williams had to endure that torture as she watched her beautiful five-year-old daughter take her last breath.
Young Isla Wilkinson went to a Christmas party last year, and came home claiming she felt unwell. Alex watched her overnight but knew something was wrong when her daughter had a temperature and woke the following morning coughing and throwing up. Ready to take Isla to the hospital, Alex ran to get her shoes when the little girl's condition rapidly worsened. In that short time, Isla’s heart had stopped and the 42-year-old mother, a former St John’s volunteer, had to continuously perform CPR until the ambulance arrived at their home in Plains Farm, Sunderland, reported Chronicle Live.
For a nerve-wracking 20 minutes, the young girl's heart had stopped beating until the medic team had managed to get it started again. However, due to the amount of time that her heart wasn't pumping, her brain had been starved of oxygen. As they arrived at Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary, her health took a turn for the worse and the devastated parents and Isla's brother, Aiden, 9, and older sister Georgia, 22, had been told that Isla had just a few hours to live.
Having had her sedated to make the process less painful for the young girl, they were informed about the results of the CT scan of her brain — the young girl had brain damage. Agonizing over the lack of time they had with her, they did everything to just be with Isla. Marcia Hogan-Williams, Isla's aunt became the spokesperson for the family after traveling from her home in Berkshire.
She revealed how Alex and her other children were taking the news at the time that Isla was still breathing. “Alex is just lying on the bed with Isla, she is singing songs, reading stories and doing her hair. We have been told she is likely to pass away later today but we are just waiting. We never thought we would be in a position like this. The doctors say the fact Alex gave CPR means we have the extra few days with Isla. It means we have been able to say goodbye to her. She is a beautiful little princess, with the biggest smile. This is so difficult for all of us," she told Chronicle Live.
The young Aiden, though heartbroken, was determined to plan a proper send-off for his little sister. “Aiden has been at the hospital and has said his last goodbye to his sister. She is his best friend, he does everything with her,” said Marcia, 39, as she choked back tears. “He wants to have a big funeral for his sister. He would like a horse-drawn carriage and everything pink because she is a little princess. He wants it to be special, all beautiful because she is a princess with her long blonde hair.”
On the GoFundMe page set up to raise £5,000 to give the Farringdon Primary School pupil a princess style send-off, Marcia wrote, “This is one of the hardest things we’ve had to write. You think it only happens to other people, you never imagine when your 5-year-old princess has flu or a bug that it could very quickly take a turn for the worst. You never imagine having to be the one to give your daughter CPR or call an ambulance. You never imagine your little princess not being able to fight any longer. But here we are."
“Beautiful Princess Isla Alexandra Wilkinson is resting with us in the Royal Victoria Infirmary. Isla was tragically taken ill on Tuesday 3rd December at home. Alex, our sister, provided critical CPR at the time, buying us these valuable 3 days in hospital. It’s been a journey for Isla but as she lies with her mam, the RVI staff are providing the best care to allow her to slip away peacefully. She is so loved and missed already, we’d like to support Alex, Aiden, Georgia and Marci at this time."
Sadly, the only update after that was that of little Isla's passing, reported Metro UK. She wrote on the page, "With the heaviest of hearts, we’d like everyone to know our beautiful Isla left this world at 5pm this evening so peacefully and perfectly, in the arms of her parents. Alex painted her nails and plaited her hair ready for the biggest most special hug as the amazing nurses at RVI finally let her go. On behalf of my sister and all our family, we’re genuinely overwhelmed and so grateful for all of the donations and messages received."
Well, we wish the young Isla a peaceful rest and to her family, our deepest condolences.