On Tuesday I travelled down to Bramley in Hampshire to meet five year old Lucy and her Mum Nicola. Lucy was diagnosed with Juvenile Nephronophthisis in early 2008 which causes a progressive destruction of both kidneys, meaning that she will need a transplant at some point in the near future.
Lucy is tube fed through the night but eats small amounts in the day. She has a good appetite though and enjoys choosing what she'd like to eat, though often can't manage much more than a few mouthfuls.
Nicola has been tested (as well as her husband) and is fortunately a good match for Lucy. At the moment Lucy's kidney function is steady but if it drops much more she will need a kidney transplant or dialysis.
Lucy was an absolute pleasure to photograph – she is a real girly girl loving all things pink and sparkly. As Nicola and I chatted she sweetly 'cooked' us lunch bringing us little bowls full of carefully selected toy foods. Before we sat down to some lunch she proudly showed me her room (pink, of course!) and her favourite toys. Lucy, who told me she wants to be a toothfairy (too cute!) or a teacher when she is older was lots of fun to be around and to photograph – she was happy to play games and sing Abba in to her CD player whilst I snapped away. She gets tired easily from her condition and Nicola told me it can be very up and down.
It was really nice to chat to Nicola, who is absolutely lovely, about everything, and I had a fab morning. I'm sure we'll keep in touch and I wish them the very best with Lucy's upcoming transplant - I'm sure it will be a great success and Lucy will be even more full of beans!