The parents of an ailing 5-year-old were forced to adopt unconventional means of ensuring they remained etched in their daughter's memory.
Little Abbie Cresswell would be lucky if she lived long enough to reach twenty. Her heartbreaking prognosis has kept her parents on their toes for as long as they can remember.
More heartbreaking was that her rare genetic condition of unknown cure caused the little girl to experience dementia, threatening to wipe Abbie's parents from her memories for good. But the determined couple wouldn't have that.
Parents of ailing 5-year-old Abbie Cresswell pose in a picture with her. | Photo: facebook.com/dannicresswell90
CHANGING THE NARRATIVE
As a last resort, Abbie's parents decided to take more stringent measures, turning to the power of music. Since then, the pair have remained committed to singing to their daughter every night before bed to ensure she had something to remember them by.
The girl's mom, Danielle Cresswell, explained how they opted for one of her favorite songs, "Dancing In the Sky," by Dani and Lizzi.
The youngster knew every word of it by heart, and by singing it every night, they hoped she would never forget them. Danielle explained:
"We sing the same song every night and she knows all the words. We have the same song for me and her dad. So when the time comes, she will still know it's mom or dad who's speaking to her."
Abbie's grandparents have also adopted the same approach, picking out their own unique songs, "You're My Sunshine," and "A Night To Remember," for the five-year-old.
SLOWLY LOSING MEMORY
The adorable little girl was diagnosed with juvenile Batten disease last year after teachers observed her failing eyesight, prompting her parents to seek a specialist.
Statistics show the neurodegenerative condition is so rare that less than four children are diagnosed with it yearly in the UK, with only 14,000 known cases in the world.
Sadly, Abbie is one of them. Since the diagnosis, Danielle and her husband, Ben, have watched their little girl slowly lose her sight and other cognitive functions.
Medical experts predicted that within years, the disorder would rob the tot of her ability to talk, walk and feed herself, leaving her with only the sense of hearing. The 30-year-old mom divulged:
"It's horrible that there is something this cruel that will take everything away from her. the only thing this disease doesn't take away from you is your hearing."
She admitted how difficult it was to watch her daughter every day, knowing the terrible fate that awaited her in the future due to her progressing condition of the CNL3 variant.
A RAY OF HOPE
Meanwhile, Abbie lives her life like any other five-year-old, enjoying Disney animations, dolls, sing-aloud, group dancing, and playing with her friends.
While the parents knew her days of fun might be short-lived, they only hoped she lived up her childhood to the fullest until they figured out a way to save her from the horrible fate.
Notably, Danielle and Ben have stumbled upon a way of improving their daughter's condition and possibly, buying her more years. However, that ray of hope comes at a bogus price, a whopping $1.7 million US dollars. The Scottish mom divulged:
"How does anyone raise that kind of money? I sometimes think I can understand because it's so rare, but then I think, why don't we try something here if it could save someone so young?"
THE INEVITABLE FUTURE
Meanwhile, Abbie's parents are doing all they can to make the transition as seamless as possible for their daughter. They already enrolled her in special classes to learn how to read braille, use a cane, and navigate by tracing the directions of sound.
These, they believe, would prepare her for when she goes blind. Additionally, they ensure she gets opportunities to see as much of the world as she could while she still had the chance, making memories while at it.
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