I have just months left to be a mum to my toddler – I've written birthday cards to last him until he's aged 18 | The Sun

SOPHIE White lives in Rotherham with her son, Remi-James.

Here, Sophie, 21, shares her heartbreak about her incurable cancer diagnosis which will leave son Remi-James, 16 months, without a mum.

“Mum gripped my hand as the doctor said: ‘I’m so sorry, you have a cancerous brain tumour – a grade 4 glioblastoma.’

As he explained that my cancer was incurable and, even with treatment, I’d only have between 12-18 months left, I stared at him in disbelief.

There was just one thing going through my head: how could I leave my baby boy, Remi-James? 

Aged just 21, I’d taken it for granted that I’d be around to raise him.


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The prospect of not waving him off to his first day at school, not seeing him grow up and become a man, fall in love and get married, was unthinkable. 

My pregnancy hadn’t been planned – I was 20 and busy working in admin for a care company, but I was so excited when I found out.

My relationship with Remi’s dad didn’t work out, but after his birth in April 2022, my life revolved around my baby – he was my world.

But that all changed on June 8 this year. I’d been out shopping with my mum Helen, 44, and Remi.

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We went for lunch, but as I picked up my knife and fork, my left hand began to twitch, followed by the left side of my face. 

As Mum asked if I was alright, I felt ice-cold all over, and then the twitching suddenly stopped.

It happened so fast, but it was terrifying. Worried I’d had some kind of seizure, Mum took me to A&E, where I was sent for scans.

That evening, the doctor broke the shocking news.

The only other possible symptoms I’d had were mood swings, but I’d put those down to hormones – never imagining I had a brain tumour. 

Tears streamed down my cheeks as I thought about Remi, a little boy who loved cuddles and storytime snuggled up together in his bed, before I tucked him in with his teddies.

The idea of him growing up without Mummy was – and still is – unbearably painful.

It was tough for my mum, too. She was trying to be strong for us, but I could see she was devastated.

On June 23, I had four hours of surgery to take out as much of the tumour as possible. The operation went well, and the team removed 95% of the growth.

But the following days were really tough. I felt myself sinking into depression.

There was so much I wanted to do, but my future had been cruelly ripped away.

A week on, I was discharged and went to stay with my mum and stepdad, Greg, 38.

I wanted to make as many memories as I could with Remi, yet I wasn’t allowed to look after him on my own, in case I had another seizure.

A simple trip to the park for just the two of us was no longer possible. I understood why, but it was so frustrating.

Meanwhile, my family and friends rallied around and began organising fund-raising events.

My best friend Chloë launched an ‘Adventure Fund’ online, which so far has raised over £11,000.

I’ve been overwhelmed by people’s kindness.

With some of the proceeds, Remi, Mum and I have had a day out to a wildlife park, which he loved. 

I started two months of chemo and radiotherapy at the end of July, and when that’s finished, we’re hoping to go to Tenerife.

The doctors have said that, despite all my treatment, the tumour will continue to grow, but I’m not giving up hope that there may be a new medication or drug trial that could extend my life.

I’ve also set up a Facebook page, Sophie’s Journey, to help others in my position.

Remi is completely oblivious to what’s happening.

He is such a happy, friendly little boy and I want to protect him as much as possible.

It’s a comfort to me that he’s too young to understand, though the flip side is that I worry he won’t remember me.

I’ve written birthday cards and Christmas cards to last him until he’s aged 18.

But I hope I’ll be around to give as many of them as possible to him.

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I’m hoping for a miracle – and I certainly won’t go down without a fight.” 

  • To donate to Sophie, visit Gofundme.com/f/sophie-remi-adventure-fund.


Glioblastoma is the most common primary brain tumour in UK adults, with around 2,500 people diagnosed every year. 

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