Our Pal - Alan S

Contact Details

C/O 21 Pavillion Gardens
Montgomerie Park
KA11 2FH
United Kingdom

NB: this is a forwarding address, we do NOT disclose home addresses

Other Information

  • Parents/Guardians - Julie and Alan
  • Interests - Formula 1, Glasgow Rangers and computing
  • Favourite Colour - Blue
  • Able to read? - Yes
  • Able to use hands? - Yes
  • Visually/hearing impaired? - No
  • Suffers from any developmental delay? - No

Siblings - aged 3 to 16 wishing to receive post

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About - Alan S

Story written 2008

Alan was born by C-Section and weighed in at a very healthy 9lbs 15 oz. When Alan was 18 months he was admitted to hospital with a very high temperature and sore ears. The Doctors ran some tests and we got a call two weeks later to go in and see them. We were told Alan had Cystic Fibrosis and it shook our world.

They then started him on antibiotics, vitamins and Creon for him to absorb the goodness in his food, and they taught us how to do physio to keep his lungs clear. Alan has required a few operations; he suffered twice from a rectal prolapse which required surgery. He also began to require IV antibiotics every 3 months; his veins were not good so they decided to insert a port which made things a lot easier for him. He was also started on DNAse to thin the mucus in his lungs so he is able to cough it up more easily. Alan also requires nebulised antibiotics to keep him well.

Alan requires a lot of care and has to endure a lot in his life with all the medicine and being in hospital, but he is a really upbeat little guy who tries to take things in his stride.

Update 13th September 2023

Alan is now 21 and will be moving on from Post Pals. A huge thank you to all of our volunteers who have supported Alan and his family over the past 14 years. Please join us in wishing Alan and his family all the best for the future.


Update 26th March 2021

Alan has been shielding what seems like forever! Hopefully we will can go out at some point. We have moved house which was really stressful for us all but we are happy now we are in. Alan is still having issues with his stomach and is lactose intolerant now. It’s on going. He has had his first dose of the Covid vaccine, he was ill for 24hrs then it settled. His lung function has improved a bit since he started on the new cf medicine. He often feels down with being stuck in due to Covid and every day feels the same. We have been baking and cooking to try and do different things with him. 

Update 12th September 2020

Alan has been shielding since March, so it’s been very isolating. His health hasn’t been as good as he’s not able to exercise, so it’s taken a toll on his lungs. He had been in hospital twice for IV’s which has been very stressful for us all as we are not allowed in with him. A lot of tears were shed, mostly by me.  

Update 31st July 2020

Alan has been shielding since March and it’s been a very stressful time. He has had 2 lung infections which meant he needed to be admitted for IVs and with the coronavirus we weren’t able to be with him, that was very difficult for us both. Not being able to get out to exercise has been bad for his lungs, we have been working hard at home to keep them moving. His lung function has declined but we are working hard to try to improve it. Thank you so much to everyone who has sent Alan mail and gifts, they have been a lifesaver of late. Even though shielding is being paused in Scotland we are very anxious about going out. It’s very strange times. 

Update 9th August 2019

We had a lovely holiday in July, it was well needed and we all enjoyed it. Alan managed to do really well in his exams so we are really pleased for him. He is being admitted to hospital on Monday 12th, he needs IVs as his health has gone down hill. As well as the aspergillus he has grown another bad bug called pseudomonas so they need to try and get it under control. He’s quite upset he needs to go in. The last year has been an almighty hard time for him not just physically but coping with it all mentally. He had a CT scan that has shown lots of damage to his lungs so he knows this is needed. His lung function is down too. 

Big thanks to everyone who has sent Alan cards, postcards and gifts, all very much appreciated by us all. 

Update 15th June 2019

Alan has been pretty unwell, he has aspergillosis in his lungs which are causing him real issues. He’s continued to lose weight and he can’t afford to as he’s so thin. He had a CT scan which shows his lungs are in poor condition with the mould growing in his lungs, so he has been put on an anti fungal medication for at least two years. He also needs his bloods checked every two weeks, which is really stressful for him.

One of the boys that go to clinic with Alan has passed away. He was only 16 and Alan and I have really struggled with this news.

Alan has taken all his exams now and we are hoping he has done ok, but I do know he tried his best so it’s all I ask of him. He’s now moved into 6 year, his last year at school.

We are going on holiday next week to try and relax.

Thanks so much to everyone who had send a card and a gift to Alan, it means so much to us, it really brightens his life. Times have been tough lately and it seems to be never ending but I’m trying to stay positive. 

Update 10th February 2019

Alan’s health has not been good in the last few months. In November he was admitted with DIOS which is Distal Intestinal Obstruction Syndrome. It causes him to be blocked all the way to his tummy with poo. He was really unwell and admitted as an emergency due to fear of it bursting. He then needed to go to the big hospital to get a midline put in as his veins were so bad, the last IVs only lasted a week and they wanted to give him another course, that went in on the 2nd attempt and lasted the two weeks. He was admitted on Christmas Eve as an emergency again with DIOS this time much worse than the first. He was really unwell and I was so scared. His IVs didn’t help at all. His bloods showed he has Allergic Bronchopulmonary Aspergillosis (ABPA), a fungus that is growing in his lungs, that he has taken an allergic reaction to, so he needs to have steroids and antifungal meds to treat it. The antifungal meds have affected his eyes, he says things are so bright or really dark. He’s trying to cope with it all but it’s been a lot on his body. His lung function is no better, so he’s to have a CT scan so they can get a good look at what’s going on. His spine is also causing him problems, we are waiting to see an orthopaedic specialist for that.

Firstly I’d like to say thank you so much for all the Christmas gifts Alan received. It was so appreciated, even more so with being in hospital.

If the Vaughan family see this could they please drop me a email or a message on Facebook please, they were one of Alan’s elves.

To Hilary for her continued support, I’m so grateful to her. To Kirsty and family also, thank you for all your letters and gifts, Alan loves reading about the children. Denise, thanks for your gifts and support you give to me, dropping a message on Facebook to see how things are really means a lot to me. To everyone who has taken the time to write to him, send him a gift or postcard, a million thanks, it’s been so welcomed at this time more than ever, to know people care about him makes him so happy. We are praying for better days to come as this year hasn’t started too well, but what we are lucky in is the love and support we receive from all of you at Post Pals and all who support it, so thank you each and every one of you.

Update 1st November 2018

Alan has had a awful few months, he’s currently having 2 weeks of IVs. His lung function has dropped by 30% in the last month and he’s lost a stone in weight. He also is having a problem with his spine because he’s lost so much weight we think. But he’s been referred to orthopaedic. He’s just not himself, he’s pale, sad and tired all the time. His veins are really bad so the lines only last a few days which really distresses him. 

Massive thanks to everyone who takes the time to write, email and send gifts we thank everyone of you. 

Update 2nd June 2018

We have had a strange few months. Firstly, we found out Alan’s surgery on his brain was not successful and he will require more surgery. We are seeing the neurosurgeon on Monday, so we hopefully will know more. He’s been having pains in his spine and legs and that will need addressing. Alan had a scan for his annual review. Alan’s scan shows he has CF-related liver disease. His liver and spleen are enlarged so he now has to go onto urso acid. His weight has fallen another 3kg, so he has been put on milkshakes to help with his weight.  His stomach issues are getting addressed with a specialist in Glasgow.  We met with him and they are doing further investigations and we had to hand in stool samples to see if that shows anything. His lungs looks good. Wee Al is shocked with the news, as are we. He looks so well, it just shows you never know what’s going on, on the inside.

We are going to Florida on the 18th June and we are hoping a break will do us all good, as it’s been a very stressful few months for us all. Alan has also sat his exams with all this going on, so we are hoping he’s done ok.

Huge thanks to everyone who writes and sends post to Alan, it is so appreciated by us all xx.

Update 15th March 2018

Alan and I were at Yorkhill on Thursday for further tests as he was having pain in his spine. The operation he had on his brain last June didn’t help the syrinx in his spine, so they were scanning and X-raying him to check for scoliosis as this is something that can happen with the malformation. They also checked to make sure his spinal column was not frayed or partly severed which thankfully they weren’t. He does has some inflammation on his spine so he has to take anti-inflammatory’s for a month to see if that helps. He will need surgery again at some point but not in the next 6 months unless something happens. So I am counting my blessings tonight. Not exactly what we hoped for but at least surgery is not immanent. He’s going to see the Physio a week on Wednesday for a muscular skeletal assessment as his joints as well as the pain in his spine have been giving him pain,

Update 4th January 2018

Firstly we would like to wish everyone a happy new year and hope you all had a lovely peaceful Christmas. Alan has had a stable month apart from his stomach. He has been having real problems with it. We have hospital on the 9th so hopefully we will get some answers. It’s also the start of his annual review so he gets his bloods taken then too. They will arrange for a bone scan and tummy scan and X-ray to be done. We see the big hospital in March. We also see the neurosurgeon this month, so we will see what that brings. Alan is also having issues with food and his weight. He has lost 4kg in the last month which is a lot for him. We are trying really hard to encourage him with food and trying to choose healthy options to make thing easier for him, although healthy options is not ideal as he doesn’t absorb the fat from his food. He also had his prelims at the end of January, a lot to cope with this month so please keep him in your thoughts.

I would like to thank everyone who took the time to send a card, postcard or gift not only at Christmas but all year, it really means the world to us. He was very much thought of at Christmas and received many many cards from all over the world. To Hilary and Kirsty who send every month to him, he talks about you as if you’re his friend who lives down the road, so thank you for taking the time to do what you do. To Alan’s elves thanks for all the lovely gifts he received – so kind of you.

Post Pals is a bright light in the darkness through all the hard times we have, so to Vikki and the team and all the lovely people who send cards and gifts to Alan, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts. We don’t know what 2018 will bring but we do know the cards that Alan receives will brighten his day.

Update 1st October 2017

Alan required surgery on his brain in June. The op took 6 hours, but he was away from us for 10 hours. It was a very scary and worrying time. He was in intensive care and it was really hard seeing him like that. The operation went well and they think it’s been a success, but we will know when he has a MRI in January. He has recovered really well and it now back at school. He can’t do all the things he used to yet as he needs 6 months recovery time. In terms of CF, it seems he just got over one thing and is hit with another. He was at clinic with problems with his stomach, it’s been really bad with him going to the toilet about 9 times a day. The consultant thinks it’s IBS but he has to go for an endoscopy for them to have a look. He will go to Glasgow hospital for that. They will put him to sleep and have a look. His lung function was down a bit, but he’s not exercising because of his head, so it’s a bit of a vicious circle right now. Alan is also in 4th year now, so it’s exam year for him, we are doing all we can to try to keep him well, so he doesn’t have to take time off school. It’s stressful for him, especially with his tummy being bad. On an up note Alan’s diabetes is really well controlled at the moment, so he’s had no hypos for a few weeks.

Alan celebrated his 15th birthday last week, he had a great day.

Huge thanks to all the support we have had over the last few months from everyone who has sent cards and gifts, means the world to us.


Update 1st May 2017

Alan has not had the best month, in fact since January it’s been really hard going for him. He has been suffering really bad headaches and we can’t get them under control. We had a neurosurgeon appointment on Friday where they have put Alan on the emergency list to go in and have an operation on his brain so they can check his brain pressure this week. He’s, as always, taken it in his stride, but his dad and I are really worried. He also has had a problem with his bowels. They took a stool sample to check that his creon were working properly, the results came back that they are working fine so he’s being referred to a gastroenterologist for them to do further investigations. They have taken bloods to check for coeliac disease but the results aren’t back yet. He’s coping with so much all at once, on top of all his CF and diabetes.
Thank you to everyone who sent Alan a card or gift, we really appreciate it. We wonder how we would get through without you. When he’s having a bad day and a card comes through his face lights up.

Update 5th March 2017

Alan has not had a good start to the year, and it’s not picked up. He is suffering terribly with headaches and bowel problems. He just isn’t getting a break. The headaches he has is connected to the chari 1 malformation he has , they have organised a MRI for the 18th. It can’t come soon enough. They have given him codeine for the pain in his head which is causing him constipation, so that then gives him bowel issues. They are not good at the best of time. So this is a added pressure for him. They have him on 3 meds to try and ease the pain in his tummy. I feel at the end of my tether actually, as I feel we are on our own with it all. The hospital have been no help when we need it, as the nurse is off sick and you can’t get a hold of anyone when you need them. I feel so sad for Alan as he is coping with so much. We have his annual review results on the 14th, so I’m really hoping we get some answers to his problems. Alan never complains about anything, but the headaches are really causing him problems.

I would like to thank everyone who had sent a card, gift or email they are really appreciated. Special thanks to Hilary and to Kirsty, Callan and Olivia.

Update 28th January 2017

Alan has been not been doing so good lately. He’s had an infection in his throat that has made him feel horrible. He was in Italy with the school when he was taken ill, he was ill for 4 days over there and it was one of the worst times ever for both of us. Glad to have him home. He’s going through all the tests for his annual review at the moment. Lots of appointments. We are seeing the neurosurgeon in a few weeks with regards to Alan’s operation, so it’s a stressful time. Alan tries to remain upbeat. We are having real issues with food at the moment. Alan lost half a stone in a week when he was in Italy, so we are trying hard to stop him losing any more.
We had a lovely Christmas, it was really quiet, but nice. Thanks to everyone who took the time to send Alan a card, gift or postcard all of them were and are really appreciated and you don’t know how much happiness it brings when Alan is having a rough day, which is a lot of the time lately.
On a positive note Alan played at Ayrshire schools badminton competition today and was runner up in the boys under 16’s and mixed doubles. Can’t tell you what an achievement that is for him and we are soooo proud of him and all the hard work he puts in with all the challenges he faces. Not a easy thing to do but he gives it his all.

Update 12th October 2016

Alan has had a terrible time, he’s had a blockage in his bowel. He’s now on 3 new meds on top of everything else. He’s not had a break lately.

Update 2nd October 2016

We missed out on Chessington as Alan has a bug so we were really sad about that and so was he. He’s really struggling with his diabetes as well at the moment with lots of hypos which is not nice at all for him. He celebrated his 14th birthday in September, he asked for a turntable to play vinyl records on, what a treat it’s been being able to listen to them again. He really loves it. We were at the lung lab on Friday to see if his lung function is up, unfortunately it’s down a little, but we’re hoping the meds help it really soon. He gets so frustrated not being himself and extra hospital appointments and being in hospital is not what or where he wants to be.
Thanks to everyone who took the time to send Alan cards and gifts throughout the month especially for his birthday it is really appreciated by all of us.

Update 8th August 2016

Alan has had an up and down month. We have been on holiday to Cuba, where Alan suffered a perforated eardrum. Very painful for him indeed. His chest has been up and down, a course of antibiotics are needed to see if it can help, if not then he will need IVs for 2 weeks. He has been training with a football team to try and keep his lung function up and they have asked him to sign for the team. Not sure if he will play many or any games but it’s been a dream of his since he was 5. I’m so proud of him! He makes my heart burst with pride. We are also attending the psychologist with Alan as he has huge issues with food. Not wanting to eat, worrying about being fat, not being like his friends. It’s really tough.
Thank you to everyone who has sent Alan post and gifts, he is so cheery when he receives them. Hilary you’re a star! Thanks so much for Alan’s project, he was so pleased.

Update 5th June 2016

Alan is currently fighting another bug. We haven’t had a break lately, it’s one after another. He is having a different antibiotic to see if it will make a difference. He is also being started on a sodium supplement because he sweats so much. He is also struggling with food, he worries so much about eating healthy even though it’s not ideal for him. He is constantly worried about his weight.

We have been at our caravan at Fort William for some rest and relaxation, it’s so peaceful up there, we played dominoes and totally chilled. Alan moves into third year tomorrow, a big change for him and a very important year in preparation for his exams.

A huge thanks to everyone who sent Alan a card. Thanks also to his monthly project from Callan, Olivia and Lennon the dog. Alan loved his parcel, his socks were amazing! He loves writing, so the note pad is perfect and the sweets are his fav.

Update 2nd April 2016

Alan had his annual review results from the big hospital in Glasgow. His lung function is still up and down. They haven’t made any changes to his medicines this year, although it’s thought his inhalers will need to be tweaked. His diabetes control is very good and they are really happy with his blood sugar results. Now he is almost 14, they have started to discuss puberty and fertility in men with cystic fibrosis. It’s very difficult for him to take all that news in.
He plays badminton as some of you may know. He played in the Ayrshire boys under 14’s which he managed to win. Words can’t express how delighted and happy we were for him. He’s also going away on a school history trip, to see world war sites in France and Belgium at the end of the month. He’s looking forward to it. He’s on holiday from school now, so we will go to our caravan for a few days, hopefully the weather will be good, and we will get out and about. Relaxing does sound brilliant though.

A huge thanks to everyone who has taken the time to send cards or a gift to Alan. You are all amazing!

Update 3rd January 2016

Alan has had a stable month, but yet again he grew a bug. It seems the winter is never- ending antibiotics to try and clear them up. We were in Tenerife for a week for some sunshine, which was lovely and it really helped Alan. He leaves tomorrow (Monday 4th) to go to Italy skiing with the school. He’s really excited. January is our annual review month, so when he returns from Italy, we have the hospital the next day. His bloods will be taken, X-rays and scans arranged to see how his lungs are holding up, and to see if there are any changes. It’s a worrying time. Alan is now 13 and he is aware that this is what it’s all for, this is why post pals is so important to us. He loves to receive mail and it helps keep him happy and not to focus on the worrying things.

Update 2nd December 2015

Alan has had a good month. He has a bug at present, but an antibiotic is helping for now. His lung function is down a little, but hoping when the antibiotics kick in, his function will improve. We had a parent’s night last week. I was so proud of him. He is doing amazing, the teachers are really pleased with his work. They said he is a very mature boy who helps everyone in the class. He is thoughtful and kind. My heart was bursting with pride that everyone sees what I already know. He deals with so much, but thinks of others all the time. He’s an amazing young man! He is really looking forward to Christmas. He is going skiing with the school in January, so I’m hoping his bug clears up and he’s as well as possible. Thank you to everyone who has written to Alan. Huge thanks to Hilary for Alan’s monthly projects she has sent him all year. You are amazing!

Update 1st November 2015

Alan’s lungs have been up and down, he’s grown a few bugs lately, which have been treated with antibiotics. He is having lots of joint pain at present and we are seeing the Physiotherapist to see if she can help. This frustrates Alan as he loves his badminton, but his legs and feet ache after it. We have also seen the neurosurgeon this month and although she is happy with him, if the pains continue, she will see him earlier than planned.

Alan is also going to Italy skiing soon with the school. It’s the first time he will have been away from me, so we are currently trying to organise everything. He goes in January, but things take planning, with all he needs to take with him.

To everyone who has written and sent gifts, a heartfelt thanks to you all. Alan loves receiving mail. Thanks to everyone who has made him smile, especially on the bad days x

Update 26th July 2015

We went on holiday to Cuba for 2 weeks recently and it was amazing. Before we went Alan got a very bad bug that needed really strong treatment and we ended up having to take it with us on holiday. It made his skin very sensitive to sunlight so we had to be extremely careful. We have also had a few days away up at fort William at our caravan and it was really relaxing.

Alan has clinic on Tuesday so we are hopeful the bug has cleared up.

Thank you to everyone who sends cards, postcards and gifts, it is very much appreciated.

Update 30th May 2015

Alan has had a good month. He had clinic last week and things are stable. His lung function was a bit better this month and he’s working really hard at it and doing badminton and horse riding. He had a bone scan yesterday so we need to wait for the results of this. Some of his vitamins were low, especially his vitamin D. So his supplements have been increased. Alan now takes 60 creon tablets a day as well as antibiotics, vitamins and other tablets, to keep him well. Sometimes it’s hard to comprehend taking that amount in one day.

Alan moves in to second year on Monday, I can’t believe a year has gone past already. He’s loving school so that makes a huge difference.

Thanks so much to everyone who has sent a card or gift this month, it means so much to us. To know people care about him is very touching.

Update 12th May 2015

Alan is recovering from having his toe nails removed, it has been 11 weeks now since they were removed, but we are finally seeing a light at the end of the tunnel. He hasn’t complained at all about his feet although I know he has been in pain with them.

He has not been able to play badminton for weeks but he went back on Tuesday and loved being back. His lung function was a little bit down but hopefully him being back to exercise will help improve it.

We have a dexa bone scan on the 28th to see what Alan’s bone density is, just to see if his bones are not thinning with the lack of vitamins and minerals his body absorbs naturally. We have cf clinic today so we are hoping all goes well.

We had a week holiday at our caravan at Easter which was lovely and the weather was fantastic. We are looking forward to our summer holidays.

A huge thank you to everyone who has taken the time to write to Alan this month, we really do appreciate it. Thanks to Hilary for his monthly project as he loves receiving your post. He loved his insect house this month.

Update 1st March 2015

Alan has had an eventful month. We are currently going through all the tests for his annual review which takes weeks. The psychology review always stirs things up we don’t think about every day.

Alan also took part in a competition to play for our county and he played amazingly and qualified to represent Ayrshire. We were mega proud but unfortunately he won’t be able to take part. On Thursday he went in to have surgery to have part of his toe nail removed and when we arrived and they saw his feet it he ended up with both big toe nails removed. He is in a lot of pain at the moment. It takes 6-8 weeks for them to heal. He was pretty gutted after playing so well to qualify then to miss out because of this.

The 10th March is his annual review so we will know the plan for the year after that. It’s a bit of an anxious time until then.

Thanks to everyone who has written or sent a gift to Alan, we really appreciate it. Alan loves it when he has mail and appreciates each bit of mail he receives.

Update 15th November 2014

Alan has had a good few months and his lung function has come up a bit. It’s been hard work for us to get it moving but we will continue to push forward to get it to where we want it. Alan has settled in at academy really well, he’s had lots of awards since he started with commendations from every subject and he got pupil of the month in maths. We had parents night last week and all the teachers say how hard he works and how lovely he is. I knew that but was lovely to hear everyone else thought that too. He got chosen for the basketball team at school which he was soooo happy about, they played their first game on Thursday where they drew 14 each.

We saw the neurosurgeon a few weeks ago for Alan’s neck and spine and she was quite happy with his MRI results, so she is not doing anything at the moment except watching. We will get a review appointment for next year.

Thanks you to everyone who has sent cards and gifts to Alan. Thanks to Kev for his continued support. To Hilary for all his monthly projects and to Denise who was his elf last year andshe messages me on facebook to see how we all are. To Libby for all her love and kindness. To Marjolyn from Holland thanks so much for all the cards you send. We appreciate everything that’s sent to Alan and he loves them all.

Update 2nd August 2014

Alan has had a good month. His lung function is still down but we are working hard on trying to improve it. Alan has finished primary school now and this upset him greatly as the lady who looks after him and his medicines isn’t going to the academy with him. We need to start again with someone new helping him.

Alan had a MRI scan for his chari 1 malformation to see if there is any change and we are currently waiting on an appointment with the neurosurgeon to get the results.

We went on holiday to Fort William for a week this summer which we enjoyed very much. We also went to the commonwealth games to watch the badminton and we had a fantastic day. It was brilliant to soak up the atmosphere.

To everyone who has taken the time to write to Alan and send gifts, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts. We really appreciate your kindness and for making Alan feel special and loved.

Update 30th April 2014

The last few months have been mixed. Alan has had ups and downs. He had an annual review where they decided to move him on to 25,000 strength creon from 10,000 to cut the number of tablets he needs to take with food as he takes 50 a day. It didn’t go well and he lasted 2 weeks. The new tablets gave him a very sore stomach, he was prolapsing all the time, and his bottom was very sore and he was terrified going to the toilet. We had that before and didn’t want to go back. I called the hospital and they decided he was to go back on 10,000 and they would try again in a few years. His vitamin d level is also low so they have given him an extra vitamin d supplement. His lung function is up a little so that’s a positive. Alan also contracted the virus hand, foot and mouth. He was covered in spots even in his throat. He couldn’t eat and it hurt drinking, but within a week he was back to normal although some of the spots on his feet are still sore looking.

On a positive note, Alan has been chosen to play for our county at badminton at Perth on Saturday. I can’t tell you how proud we are of him, who would have thought our baby would push himself and be able to achieve this amazing achievement. Alan continues daily to amaze me, he really is a remarkable boy with nothing stopping him, not cf, diabetes, his chari1 malformation, nothing!

He goes to the high school in August so we are in the transition period at present. I have to say I’m worried about it, a whole new set of challenges for both of us, and it’s the unknown of who will look after his medicine and things, but I guess that will be sorted out.

A huge thanks to everyone who sends mail and gifts to Alan. He loves receiving them and reading all your letters.

Update 28th January 2014

Alan is currently doing ok, although he is on a antibiotic for a mucus cough which has caused his lung function to drop.

He was entered in a badminton competition and managed to get to the final, he did amazingly well. Cf certainly doesn’t stop him trying even if he is exhausted afterwards.

Alan is currently going through lots of tests for his annual review in March. The big hospital come to see us to make a plan for the year so we’re keeping things crossed for good results.

He also came home from school today with star pupil for hard work. We couldn’t ask any more of him, he’s trying so hard. He’s a inspiration to me. He’s hard working, positive, kind, loving and always wants to help others. I’m very proud of him and how he is dealing with things at the moment. All helped by the fact he knows people care about him by writing to him.

To Kev, Maria, Hilary, Denise and Elizabeth, for the gifts they sent Alan at Christmas – we are so grateful and we thank you all so much. Alan was very happy with all the gifts. Thanks to Marty for the letters and to everyone else who sent mail, we thank you so much.

Update 2nd December 2013

Alan has had a stable couple of months, his lung function is still down but we are working hard on trying to keep it up.

He won a trophy tonight at his horse riding for most improved rider and we are so proud of him. He is doing well at school and at parents night they told us how mature he is and managing his medicine very well. He was away at Arran for 5 days with the school, although his dad had to go with him.

Alan is looking forward to Christmas very much, we love this time of year.

Huge thanks to everyone who has sent cards or gifts to Alan and to Kev and Hilary who regularly send to him. To everyone who has taken the time to write to Alan, we all feel blessed and he feels special receiving mail.

Update 28th September 2013

Alan has had a good month. His lung function is up a little and he has grown no bugs. He has grown and lost a little weight too and they want to keep an eye on that.

He had a birthday on the 24th and we went up to fort William as we have a caravan up there. Him and his dad did gorge walking, which is walking up mountains and ravines and using the waterfalls as natural flukes. All very scary for me! But the boys loved it. I was very proud of Alan as it was something I never thought he could do.

He is currently away on an adventure weekend with the diabetic team from the hospital and the other kids. He has never been away from me before and I was really worried but I’ve not heard from him so he will be having way too much fun to think about home.

He also had to write a speech at school to be considered for school house captain and Alan was lucky enough to be chosen by a panel of teachers and pupils to be the house captain, which was another very proud moment for us. He is turning into an independent young man who makes us very proud to be his parents each and every day. He’s my hero and inspiration.

To everyone who sent Alan a birthday card, gift or letter, we thank you. To Kev for all the letters, HUGE box of goodies for Alan’s birthday, for his support to me on Facebook, I thank him from the bottom of my heart. To Hilary for her monthly project and for the graze box for Alan he enjoyed it very much. To everyone who has put a smile on Alan’s face I really appreciate it. We do feel very cared for and loved.

Update 15th August 2013

Alan has had a stable few months, although his lung function is still causing concern, as it’s still low. We are attending the lung lab every month at the moment. We are taking him swimming for exercise and to help with physio. Alan has also had an increase in insulin as his sugar levels were running too high, he now does all his injections which are up to 4 a day now. He also has to take 48 creon a day as well as all his other meds. It’s a lot for him to deal with.

We were at Fort William for our holiday and although he still has all his treatments to do it is a break away and he loves it up there. He goes fishing with his dad and loves relaxing and watching all the little birds. He starts back at school on Monday as Scotland schools go back early. He goes into primary 7 and is looking forward to it. He is very caring and helpful and will be a monitor for the primary 1’s starting.

A huge thanks to everyone who has written to Alan. To Kev, Hilary and Elizabeth who write regularly to him. Kev, a huge thanks for the painting you did for Alan it is amazing and he loves it. He loves receiving mail and hearing everyone’s stories, we are really grateful to everyone who has taken the time to write.

Update 31st May 2013

Alan’s lung function is still causing concern, he is being monitored every 4 weeks at the respiratory lab. He is continuing with his hydrotherapy for his lung function and joints.

He has been playing badminton for a few months now and was in a competition in which he managed to get to the semi final. We were so proud of him. He really pushed himself.

We are seeing the neurosurgeon in July again about his chari 1 malformation and I will update when we find out what they say.

I want to thank everyone who has taken time to write to Alan as he really loves receiving post, it really cheers him up.

Update 11th April 2013

Alan has had a rough few months. He had his port removed in Yorkhill which he has recovered from. He had an annual review with the team and his lung function remains low and it’s the lowest it’s ever been, which is scary. They have started him on hypertonic saline to try and remove the gunk from his lungs, it’s hard for him to tolerate it as it’s very salty. He also has been referred to the hydrotherapy to help with his joints and his lung function, he’s really enjoying it. At the review it was decided that if his lung function doesn’t improve then he will require his port to be replaced which requires another operation. This makes me very upset as I wanted them to replace it when they took the broken one out! It’s very frustrating.

We are just back from a week up north which did us all the world of good as we all needed it. The weather was fab and very sunny which was really nice. Alan also started horse riding to help his lungs – he loves it and it is very rewarding to see him happy.

We want to thank everyone who sent cards and gifts to Alan. We really appreciate it and he loves receiving post, it makes us all smile when he opens them. So thanks to everyone who has taken the time to write.

Update 29th January 2013

Alan has been in hospital having a operation. He was having his port removed as it was blocked and he was very frightened this time and it was horrible to watch. He did very well though and was extremely brave. He has picked up a lung infection and is presently on antibiotics to help.

Alan is also struggling with food at the moment, it’s actually awful! He is not wanting to eat and when he does he wants it to be healthy as he says he doesn’t want to be fat. School have been doing healthy eating and this is the result. With him having cf and diabetes, food is a very important part of his health care and to say it is challenging is a understatement.

We are seeing the specialist hospital in March for Alan’s annual review, his lung function has continued to drop so I am hopeful they will have some sort of plan to help. He also had a scan of his abdomen to check all his organs so we will get the results of them then too.

Post Pals is a godsend at the moment as when Alan recieves mail it really makes him smile, which we are not seeing too much at the moment with the food issues. So thanks to everyone for their continued love and support.

A huge thanks to everyone who has sent Alan a card, letter or gift. Thanks to Hilary who is Alan’s monthly project (he loved the blanket), to Natasha for her cards, to Kim, Maria and Michael, Barbara, and everyone else, we really appreciate your kindness.

Update 29th November 2012

Alan has not been having a very good time, he’s off school with a very bad infection causing him to have a really bad cough and sore chest. He is on a new antibiotic to see if we can get it under control. He has been attending the lung lab to keep an eye on his lung function which in the last 2 months has dropped 20% which is a massive worry to us.

Alan always remains upbeat and really cares about others and he just tries to get on with it, which makes me very proud. He is also going to be an uncle as my eldest daughter, Nicola, is expecting a baby in June, so he’s excited about that.

I’m very lucky as although Alan is 10 he still believes in Santa so he’s very excited about December coming!

Thanks to everyone who has taken the time to write to Alan, is is truly appreciated.

Update 2nd October 2012

Alan has had a birthday this month and he was 10. He had a lovely time and we went up to Fort William for the weekend. He has a bug which has resulted in him needing 2 weeks of antibiotics though.

We are still waiting to hear from hospital about the renewal of his port – we have been waiting months for the appointment. His lung function remains down and they are monitoring it every month to keep a eye on it.

Alan received pupil of the month this month for continuous hard work in maths and we are very proud of him.

Thanks to everyone who sent cards for Alan and to Maria and Michael for the present for his birthday as it was very much appreciated. We do really enjoy receiving cards and letters, they really cheer him up and I am grateful to every one of you.

Update 19th January 2012

We had hospital recently for the start of Alan’s annual review. He had his bloods taken and they arranged for him to go to the lab for a lung function test, to the x-ray department for an x-ray, and scans of his abdomen, liver and portal system, which are happening on the 1st February. He is also going to have 2 weeks of intravenous antibiotics starting on Monday. We are trained to do them at home and although they are very tiring doing them, it means we do not have to stay in hospital. Alan has been off school with a sickness bug and is just not quite himself, so, the IVs will hopefully help make him feel a lot better. I do worry at this time of year when it is Alan’s review time, I am hoping for good news in March when we see the specialist from Glasgow to get the results.

A huge thank you to everyone who sent Christmas cards and gifts to Alan, he loved them. Huge thanks to Sara and Meggie for sending Alan all year, he would love to write back to them to thank them but there is no address on it.

Update 30th September 2011

Alan has had chickenpox very badly. They were in his mouth and down his throat and because he has CF they gave him antiviral medicine but it really did not help. He also had his iv line in whilst he had chicken pox which was challenging for us and the hospital as they had no kids having ivs and chicken pox at the same time! He also has had a infection which required 2 weeks worth of antibiotics which hopefully has cleared it.

He celebrated his 9th birthday last week – he got a mobile phone and he was delighted. I can’t believe he is 9, time has flown. I really struggle at his birthday; I think about each year ticking past and think too much about what if… it’s a bitter sweet time for me. I just try to get through it and Alan receiving cards and gifts from everyone reminds me people care.

Thank you to everyone who has sent Alan a card or gift for his birthday, it’s much appreciated.

Update 5th July 2011

Alan has had a good month. He had a haemophilis bug at the beginning of the month and had 2 weeks of antibiotics and he is due to have two weeks of IVs from the 20th July, so hopefully that will keep him well.

We managed to travel to the Post Pals party this year, it was quite a journey but sooooo worth it. We all had a great day and Alan really loved meeting everyone, it was so lovely to finally meet everyone.

We are taking Alan camping for the weekend for him to try it; he’s been desperate to give it a go. We are going to Inverness as he wants to go to Loch Ness to see if he can see the monster. Keep your fingers crossed the weather stays nice for us!

A huge thanks to everyone who sent Alan cards and gifts. Thank you to Sara and Meggie for the June project, Alan is enjoying playing with them very much.

Over the last few years Post Pals has made our life more bearable. To know people out there care about us means a lot. When Alan is feeling down and a card falls through the door, it makes both his and our day. So to everyone who has and continues to write to Alan, I want you all to know it means the world to us, so a HUGE thank you.

Update 2nd April 2011

Alan is having 2 weeks of ivs at present, which is very tiring for both of us but hopefully will kill the bugs in his lungs. He had an annual review last month and it was decided that he would have ivs every 3 months again this year as his lung x-ray had no changes from last year so it seems to be working.

He is attending the neurosurgeon on the 26th of the month to see what they are doing with his brain and spine, whether it will be a review again or surgery, his legs are really playing up at times. He has been really struggling psychologically at the moment and we are working closely with our team to make things easier for him. He is worrying about everything which she thinks is leading to him seeing shadows, so sleeping is a real problem.

To everyone who has sent cards and gifts to Alan it is so appreciated. With him being so low, he really loves getting them and it is a joy to see his face as he reads them and realises people do care about him. Any card this month would as always be most welcome. Post Pals has made life more bearable and seeing Alan’s face light up is priceless, so a huge heartfelt thanks.

Update 12th January 2011

Alan had a great Christmas and kept well. His chest was clear although he is still having problems with his legs. He got a psp for Christmas which he was delighted with.

We had Alan’s check up on Tuesday and his chest was clear, he had grown and he had put on weight. For the first time in ages he got a glowing report. I am so pleased. Alan is coping really well with the problem with his legs and feet and although he gets sore he is still keen to have a life. He is on codeine for the pain. Alan has had his bloods taken and he has to have an x-ray, an abdomen scan, a lung function test and a walking test before our next hospital appointment. We see the specialist from Glasgow then and they make the years plan for him.

Amy, Alan’s sister, has been nominated for North Ayrshire’s young musician of the year. We are so proud of her.

Thanks to everyone who sent cards to Alan and Amy at Christmas and to Kim and Maria for sending Alan a Christmas gift.

Update 26th October 2010

Alan has had the usual cough this month and he is due IV’s in November so hopefully things won’t get too bad. We went to the Neurologist a few weeks ago to have the results of Alan’s scans. They are satisfied with the way Alan’s neck works so although his ‘blocks’ are out of alignment they are not concerned. He will be seen in 3 months by them. The pains in his legs are no better and they have given him the painkiller codeine for that, which is helping a little. Alan is also managing to do his insulin himself all the time now. He had done it a couple of times when he felt he could, but the day we went to see the surgeon at Glasgow, he asked me if he could do it. Of course I said yes and since then he has done it by himself. I’m so proud of him, we all are, and in fact he is very proud of himself because it was a big obstacle for him to overcome.

We managed to use the tickets we got from Post Pals for Alton Towers we went down for Alan’s birthday. What a fab time we had, so thank you. Alan loves the fast rides, although he was too small for some of them, but he loved the ones he could get on.

Thank you to everyone who sent Alan a birthday gift, sent a letter, or a card. It really does make him smile and brighten his day.

Update 29th August 2010

Alan has been having 2 weeks of IVs and they finish on Monday. The IV’s have made a big difference to him this time; he has a little more energy and is not coughing as much either. We have also been to the hospital to have CT scans on Alan’s neck and they said results would be available next week sometime. He is having very bad pains in his legs and feet so hopefully they will get back to us soon so we can get something to make him feel a little better. He managed to do his insulin himself this month which made us so proud of him.

Alan is also back at school now and likes his new teacher. He loves fishing too and he caught his very first fish all by himself yesterday, it was a rainbow trout and weighed 2.2lbs. He was so proud of himself and his dad was really proud of him for the way he managed it himself, he is turning in to a very independent boy.

To everyone involved with Post Pals, I can’t put into words the difference it makes to our lives. When we are having a bad day, a card will pop through the door and really brighten our day, it makes a huge difference to all of our lives.

Alan was lucky enough to have a dream come true granted to him by the This Morning programme this month. He got to go in a helicopter and drive a tank. We got to stay in a hotel overnight and they came and surprised him in the morning – he had so much fun and to see him so happy was really nice. Alan has had a lot to cope with lately and I’m ever so proud of him and the way he handles things. We know we have lots more obstacles to overcome, but he is actually my hero and makes me very proud to be him mummy.

Huge thanks to everyone who has emailed, written, and sent a gift to Alan and Amy this month, it is so appreciated.

Update 24th August 2010

Alan goes to hospital on Thursday for 2 CT scans. He has managed to do his insulin himself too, we are so proud of him.

Thank you all for making Alan smile with all the post he receives.

Update 4th July 2010

Alan has been struggling with everything this month. He has been having serious pains in his legs and feet, and having headaches too. We are still waiting to see the surgeon at the specialist hospital and every day waiting feels like a month, it is so hard waiting. He is also finding getting used to his insulin difficult – he hates it. We have tears when we have to do the injections and it is awful watching him like that. I’m so hoping he gets used to it. All post will be most welcome as he needs cheering up so much.

His dad and I went fishing for the first time and he loved it. He never caught any fish but is going to try again. We also went to Linlithgow Palace this month, there was a jousting tournament on and we all had a great time. He has also stopped for his summer holidays from school; he is pleased because his legs and feet are really sore in the morning so this gives him time to recover.

Alan got a cup and shield at prize giving at school. He won the citizenship award and his headmaster said he is an inspiration to everyone he meets. He was so pleased to win it and his dad and I were very proud. He is inspirational to us every day.

We have the Diabetic nurse and the eye clinic tomorrow so hopefully the nurse can give us some tips on how to make life a bit easier for Alan.

Thanks to everyone who has sent posty and gifts to Alan. This has been a difficult month, so a huge thank you.

Update 5th June 2010

Firstly I would like to update you on Alan’s surgery. His operation was a success and he slowly recovered from it. Due to him being put to sleep with gas because they could not get a vein in his hand or arm, it irritated his lungs a lot and he had a awful cough. He had 2 weeks worth of IVS to try and keep any bugs at bay and he will have that every 3 months now.

They have also put him on the brown steroid inhaler as a preventer because he has been very wheezy lately.

Now when I updated last month that we were waiting on MRI results, well we got a call a few weeks ago to ask me to go up to hospital as they wanted to talk to me. They told me that they had found fluid at the back of his brain and a mass at the top of his neck that they could not see properly, so they needed to do a scan of Alan’s spine. What a two weeks it was – we had surgery one week and the scan the following, and obviously we were worried out our minds. We went for the scan but they did not say a thing, only that the results would be available in a few days. Alan was so so brave. It took 2 hours to do the scan and he had to lie very still. We waited a week and no news, so last Friday I could not take the wait anymore and I rang the hospital. Our nurse called Yorkhill and they said the results were available but the neurologist had not looked at it, so she was emailing him. Monday was the bank holiday so there was nothing, but on Tuesday the hospital rang to ask if we could go up on Friday the 3rd, so of course we agreed.

We went and the neurologist told us that Alan had a Chiari 1 malformation, with a Syrinx. This means for Alan, that the part that joins his brain and spinal column has a malformation and part of his brain is through the hole, the part that controls his movement. It is so tight that it has caused a syrinx, which is a build up of fluid on his spinal cord. They are referring him to a specialist hospital in Glasgow for him to have surgery on his brain and spinal cord. We are shocked and are very very worried. The headaches he has been having is a sign of this condition, but if they don’t do the operation it could leave Alan paralyzed and we do not want that at all. He already has more than enough to deal with and now all this.

He said to me last night he is sick of hospitals, but there is nothing I can do to stop this. Please keep him in your thoughts and he would really appreciate any cards anyone can send him. I just want to give him a boost and let him know we are all thinking of him.

A huge thank you to everyone who has sent posty to Alan this month, and for all the gifts he has received – huge thanks.

Update 30th April 2010

Alan has been having such a hard time lately, it’s been never ending.

He went up to the specialist hospital and had a CT scan and also an MRI scan but we are still waiting on the results. They are checking his chest because its not as good as it should be, and they also think his sinuses need to be all washed out under anesthetic. They also have discovered that Alan is diabetic – not normal diabetes though – its CF related. This means he needs to have insulin and we have to check his blood sugars before and after every meal. Alan is coping quite well with it, but it’s a lot to get used to.

He is also going in for a operation on the 13th May to have his bowel repaired and I’m really hopeful it will make it easier him. He also has 2 appointments to attend at the eye clinic as he has been having bad headaches and blurry vision; they think it might be because of his blood sugars.

I would like to thank everyone who has sent emails, letters, cards and gifts to Alan this month. He has so enjoyed receiving them all, especially when he has not been so well. We have received lots of email from people from the TV show. To everyone – a HUGE thank you as it has really brightened Alan’s and our lives; there are some really kind people out there.

A huge thank you to Kim Lawerance as she has been so kind and considerate to Alan and has sent him lots of things over the month including a jigsaw in parts of the world with books to match it, so thank you very much. To Jessica, thanks for the cards, and to Valerie, Kate Dee and to Kaden. A huge thanks to Stuart for the pictures and the scarf from the Rangers final, it was so kind of you. Sorry to everyone I have not mentioned, but we really appreciate your support.

Update 21st April 2010

Alan has be diagnosed with CF related Diabetes and now requires insulin every day. He also is having surgery on his bottom on the 13th May and he is struggling a bit.

Update 10th March 2010

Sorry for the late update. Alan had the specialist yesterday from the hospital in Glasgow to review his annual review results and I have to say it came as a huge shock to me and I’m finding it very difficult to come to terms with.

As you all know, every month I’m telling you that Alan has some sort of infection and our own hospital have always thought that it is upper respitory infections and they have given him antibiotics to combat them. However, yesterday the consultant hit us with the bombshell that Alan’s lungs have significant changes since last year and I can hardly believe it. They score them out of 25 for the condition of their lungs and Alan only scored 15. He is only 7 so that is not a good score at all. I’m gutted.

They are also sending him for an mri scan to have a detailed look at his lungs and sinus system. They are putting him to sleep to deep wash all his sinuses to try to prevent infections or to wash out any bugs that are lurking.

He has also been referred to the optromitist as he has been having double vision and headaches and not seeing his work very well. He had his eyes tested and it’s not his eyes so they are investigating that.

He went to see the surgeon last week due to the fact he is having a rectal prolapse almost every time he goes to the toilet, so in the next few weeks the surgeons are going to try to repair it or if necessary remove a bit of his bowel to stop this happening. He suffered from it before and they repaired it, but until they actually have a look they won’t know.

It’s been a very stressful start to the year and I’d like to say to everyone who sends mail and smiles that I am eternally grateful. It really brings smiles to us all knowing people care and take the time to write to us.

Update 10th February 2010

Alan got his line taken out yesterday, his 2 weeks of IV’S are finished and it has made him feel a lot better in himself. He got his results from his glucose tolerance test and his levels are a little high and they have to be monitored for a month to see what the results are. He has also been having rectal prolapses again so the doctor has referred him to the surgeon to repair it again. Last time we saw the surgeon he said that a part of his bowel would need to be taken out so we are just waiting on an appointment to come through.

It seems to be one thing after another for Alan, poor wee soul, but although looking at him I can see in his eyes he gets down, when you ask him he never ever complains. He is a little star and I am so proud of him.

He got a new Star Wars toy yesterday for being so brave – he loves Star Wars at the moment.

Update 26th January 2010

Alan has been ill and is struggling with lots of infections and he is so tired, so we are being admitted tomorrow for 2 weeks worth of IV’S. Hopefully it will make him feel better. They are also testing him for diabetes. We have so much happening and Alan is so sad and down, but Post Pals really cheer him up so thank you.

I will do a proper update soon with thank you’s for Alan’s Christmas post.

Update 3rd December 2009

Sorry for the short update this month, Alan has had a very rough month with infections that we just can’t seem to get rid of at all.

He got his swine flu jag this week too and it has knocked him for six, his arm is really sore and his neck is sore. I will update a proper update next month.

May I take this chance to thank everyone over the year who has taken the time to write to Alan, it really makes his day and it brings such joy to his life, we are blessed to have Post Pals in our lives.

Wishing everyone and their families on Post Pals a very Happy Christmas.

Update 31st October 2009

Alan has had a month of fighting an infection we just can’t seem to shift. He has a cough that would frighten you and its keeping him awake at night and making him feel tired and he has not got much energy. I’m really hoping they are going to get this under control soon as it is hard going for him when he feels this way.

He had a Halloween party yesterday and dressed up as a monkey. He had a really good time.

He is still trying really hard at school and managed to get 9 out of 10 this week for spelling. He also got a certificate for topic work and pencil and bookmark. He also passed his Level A maths and I am really proud of him doing so well and coping with feeling so horrible.

We went to the cinema this month to see Up in 3D. It was really good and I enjoyed it as much as Alan and Amy.

We wish everyone a happy Halloween and we thank Post Pals and everyone who writes to Alan and Amy. We are blessed.

Thank you to everyone who has sent Alan post this month, we really do appreciate it. To Jessica, Helen, Kim, Maria, Sarah, Kate Dee, Sami, Valerie, Margaret from America, and Lucy by email. Thank you all. To Post Pals for the DS game and thank you and for the angels of hope.

Update 1st October 2009

Alan has had a up and down month. He had an infection at the beginning of the month and then just before his birthday he began to feel under the weather and was very sick, but he seemed to pick up. Now he is back to being ill again, he has been coping with an infection but today it has got on top of him. He was feeling a bit yucky this morning but went to his friends and his mum had to bring him home. He was the colour of a ghost, i gave him some calpol and he is tucked up in bed. I hope he will pick up soon, i will ring the hospital in the morning for the doctor to have a look at him.

He has celebrated a birthday, he was 7 and he had a fab day. He got some lovely gifts, he got a dareway which is a battery operated toy you stand on and it moves back and forward – he loves it.

We also have parents’ night tomorrow to see how he is getting on, they are doing their topic on castles and he loves every minute of it.

To everyone who sent Alan a card or a gift for his birthday, thank you all so much, we really appreciate it. To Hayley Thorn, it was so nice to hear from you, to Kate Dee, Fiona, Sami, Tracey, Charlie (if you email Alan your address he has a letter for you). Rachael and Dave (happy birthday to you Rachael), June and David Junko, Rachael, Jenny, Michael and Maria, Helen (thank you for the card and gift), Jessica for the card and gift and for all her support, to Kim Ginger (your present and card was really appreciated and your cards are so cool) and to Valerie, thank you for everything, you are so kind to all of us, to Vikki thank you for the card you sent Alan, they were really nice words.

Update 30th August 2009

Alan has had a up and down month. He has had this haemophillis bug for weeks and can’t shake it. He has had an awful cough and a runny nose for weeks and we are waiting until Monday for a swab to come back. The last one we handed in got lost somewhere so it has been a waiting game for the last 2 weeks.

He also went back to school on the 17th and he has settled in not too badly, just the tablet taking incident, and when he is at school he has real issues with going to the toilet so with the schools help we are working through that. He also has been happy to be back at school with his friends and he really likes his teacher so that is a real bonus.

He is looking forward to his birthday in September; i can hardly believe he is going to be 7. We have the hospital on the15th for a port flush and a check up so hopefully it will go well and i will update next month.

A massive thankyou to everyone who sent Alan posty this month, they really have been a god-send. He has had cards from America and Cuba. To Natalie, Kara and Osmany from Cuba, to the crafty place challenge ladies thank you so much the cards are beautiful, to Kim Ginger, Sarah, Hayley, Kate Dee, Sami, Jessica for her regular post (and love and support – we missed you when you were on holiday), and to Valerie thank you so much for all your mail and gifts you send to the kids and to me, you are a wonderful person and we also missed you very much when you were on holiday.

Update 3rd August 2009

Alan has had a difficult month; he has been fighting a infection that he can’t seem to shift. We are waiting on results from the lab to see what treatment they will do now, as 2 weeks of antibiotics hasn’t seemed to move it.

He has also has been struggling with CF, he has been very tearful and gets really upset saying he wants to be a normal boy and that he doesn’t want to take tablets anymore. This has been heartbreaking and hard to deal with for all of us. The psychologist came out on Tuesday and had a chat with him, explaining why he needs to take tablets and showed him what they do in his tummy. She was brilliant with him. She is taking it slowly so we are seeing her again. He just keeps saying he wants to be normal and that he is not happy having CF. Heartbreaking.

He goes back to school in 2 weeks. We broke up much earlier than the schools down south, so hopefully when he goes back he will get back into the routine of school and the upset will pass. I think some of the children have been asking him about why he needs to take tablets and this is making him feel uncomfortable, so fingers crossed this will not get worse.

Post Pals have been a godsend. I can’t tell you how happy Alan is when he gets cards and this makes him feel special and loved, so to everyone who has taken the time since Alan has been on Post Pals – a huge THANKYOU.

Thanks to everyone who has sent Alan and Amy posty this month. To Valerie for all her love and support, to Jessica for all her cards, to Kim Ginger for her cards, dinosaur book and spy kit and the gift for Amy, to Jackie, and Jenny Clift too. Thank you all ever so much.

Update 30th June 2009

I really did speak too soon last month when I said Alan had a good month! He developed a terrible cough and could not even lift his head off his pillow; it really hit him for six. I rang the hospital and they saw him straight away. After an examination and a throat swab, they thought he had an infection and they would give him a covering antibiotic until his swab came back. It seemed to pick him up and the nurse rang to say he had an infection and not one of the bad bugs, thank goodness. He was to take the antibiotic for 2 weeks and be re swabbed. He is still coughing and is quite breathless at times, although when it’s really warm and humid he gets like that anyway. He seems to be a lot better, although the swab is not clear yet and we are persevering with another 2 weeks of meds.

I am hopeful he will stay the way he is, because on 1st July we are going to Disneyland Paris for a week. We are all so excited and looking forward to it. Alan is very excited about meeting Mickey Mouse! He also stops for his school holidays on Tuesday for 6 weeks and then will go into primary 3. He is looking forward to the summer holidays. We joined Historic Scotland and are visiting castles. We went to Edinburgh castle and had lots of fun and we are hoping to do lots more in the summer holidays.

Every month I am astounded by people’s kindness and love that they send. To Jessica – a huge thank you for all the cards and the keyring you sent Alan, we really appreciate it. To Valerie – thank you for all the cards you send the children, it really brightens their day receiving them. Thank you for the books and pencils and the sweet, they will be well used. The kids look forward to receiving your cards and I would also like to thank you for the beautiful card you sent me too. I really appreciated it and it made me feel special. To Sarah for her cards and to Kim for her cards, they are out of this world, especially the dinosaur one. Thanks to Michael and Maria, to Sami for the card and motorbike, and to Dispina for the card and postcard. Thank you all so much, our days are brightened by you all and i really thank you.

Update 31st May 2009

Alan has had a really good month health wise with no problems for the first time in years – i hope im not tempting fate saying this. He has had a busy month with staying at his aunts for the first time and he really enjoyed it. He was also away on a school trip to the lifeboats and had a great day as they got on the boats and he got to sit in the drivers seat. He also got his report card on Friday and it made my heart burst as he’s doing really well and trying his best and that is all we can ask of him. He is looking forward to his holiday in July and is busy saving his pennies, looking for jobs to do that end up costing me a fortune!

A huge thanks to Jessica for the brilliant balloon she sent Alan. He absolutely loves it and it really made his day receiving it. Thanks also for all her cards and love and support. To Sarah, thanks so much for sending Amy and Alan a gift. To Valerie, thanks for your cards and support. Thank you to Kim Ginger. To the Fullman family, thank you for sending Alan a Doctor Who torch – he takes it to bed with him.

Update 30th April 2009

Alan has had a reasonable month this month. He has been able to go out to play at school since the weather is a bit better. We had parents’ night and Alan got a fantastic report, he has come on so well this year at school and copes remarkably well. Kim sent him a beautiful 3D card for doing so well and he adores it as it’s a 3D dinosaur. We took him to the museum where he saw a dinosaur exhibition and he loved it. We also went to the cinema to see Monsters v Aliens in 3D and it was amazing to watch.

This month i also let Alan stay at his aunts for the first time. Due to his meds i never let anyone else do it, but he was keen to go and had a great time and it meant Alan and i had a bit of time to ourselves. He is staying again next weekend and Alan and i are going away for the weekend because Amy is in London with school.

Alan has hospital in 2 weeks for check up and i will update next month or on my blog.

A huge thanks to everyone who sent Alan and Amy mail this month. To James, Kim, Helen, Maria and Michael, Sami and Aisha for their cards. To Valerie for the Army hat, stickers and cards to both Amy and Alan, to Ria for her letter and picture, to Alaison for her postcard from New Zealand, to Shirley for her cards, and a heartfelt thanks to Jessica for all her letters. To everyone who has taken the time and thought to sent a card or gift, they mean so much to them and they really enjoy receiving them. Amy sends cards to other pals regularly and Alan replies to every letter he receives. Thanks to Post Pals for sending the bear as Alan loves it and sleeps with it every night. Also for the egg – we are busy growing it and although there is nothing to see yet, we are waiting and hoping.

Update 1st April 2009

Alan has had a busy month. Some of his results from his annual review are back so they have adjusted his meds a little – some of his vitamin levels were a bit low so they have upped them a little. He saw the ENT too as his ears are really sore all the time and they are over sensitive. They hope he will grow out of it and I hope so too because the things we take for granted really hurt him and the bell at school leaves him in agony.

He has been really trying at school to get 10 out of 10 in his spelling test and finally he made it. He was so chuffed and we were proud of him (he got his well earned playstation game). Jessica sent him a certificate and he has it on his wall with pride.

Alan and Amy made me breakfast in bed on Mother’s Day and it was lovely. They got me cards, a teddy and chocolates. It was a lovely treat.

We also had sad news as one of our friends died. We all took it hard and Alan finds it difficult to deal with. Although he is only 6, he has lost his papa, gran, and now our friend, in 2 years and words are hard to find to explain this, but we just try our best.

Health wise, Alan is struggling with a bug in his throat but managing as best he can. CF gets me down sometimes.

On a happier note, we are booked to go to Disneyland Paris in July for a week. Alan is so excited and so am I! He has wished for this for so long and now it is happening.

A huge thank you to everyone who wrote to Alan and Amy this month, they really love receiving post. A big thanks to Sarah who sent me a card this month as it really touched me. To Jessica for all her letters and gifts. To Helen for the card and the tapes she sent Alan. To the person who sent the scarves, and to everyone else who wrote letters and cards. Thanks Post Pals for cuddles the bear – Alan has slept with it every night since he got it. To Val for the posters and to Kim for the bunny making kit. A big thank you, it is really appreciated.

Update 1st March 2009

Alan had a bug at the start of February which really made him feel ill but as normal he bounced back and didn’t need to miss too much school as it was half term. I thought i had taken his bug as i felt terrible but it turned out to be shingles which was really nasty and i looked and felt awful. Alan wanted to see Bolt 3D but i wasn’t well enough to take him so his big sister came to the rescue and the two of them went to Frankie and Bennys first for dinner then to the cinema and he had a great time.

He has been at a few birthday parties this month as his cousin was 5 and had a party and his friend from school was 6 and he was at the bowling for his party. He also was out with his friend from school for his dinner and then to the soft play where he had a ball.

We have had workmen in fitting a shower rather than a bath for us to make things easier when Alan’s port is accessed. The occupational therapist helped us get it done and it has made life a bit easier. It means Alan can get a shower in the morning quickly rather than me having to put him in a bath because he sweats so badly and I’m really pleased it is done.

Alan has to go to hospital on Wednesday for his lung function test to finish off his annual review, and then hopefully we will get all the results the following week. He had his liver scan done but they don’t give us the result until they have it all done. I hope it has all gone well. We have ear, nose and throat clinic this month too as Alan’s ears are still not completely right since his operation and they want to check that again. His ears are very very sensitive and a noise we don’t think is loud is very loud to him. When it’s the school bell he stands with his fingers in his ears. We will update you next month on his results.

A huge thank you to everyone who took the time to write to Alan and Amy this month, as always he loves receiving them. A huge thank you to Jessica for all her letters, Shirley for the letter and the card making things you sent to Alan (he has done you a card and i will post it off to you), to Rachel for her card and the stickers she sent, to Kim who sent Alan a card and a bolt magazine (thank you, he loved it), Grace and Linus for the post card, Ria for the lovely letter she sent us, Valerie for the postcard, Kate Dee for the card and to Lu, June and David Junko, Maria and Michael and to everyone else who sent Alan a valentine card, a huge thank you as it made him feel extra loved. He also received a postcard from Samuel in Finland and would like to reply to him as he was so happy receive it, but it had no reply address.

Update 2nd February 2009

Alan has had a up and down month. He had his annual review in January but it’s a bit early to get the results yet. He has had terrible nose bleeds this month which was very scary for both of us as it happened in the morning when he woke up and scared us dreadfully but we coped. Alan is also suffering from a terribly sore throat and a dreadful cough at present and is a bit down in the dumps with it.

Alan had a birthday party this month – he went ice skating for the first time and he really did enjoy it. He’s also working hard at school and on a Friday they are now getting spelling tests. At first he was getting 4 out of 10 but last week he got 8 and he was so pleased with himself that we bought him a toy as a treat for doing so well. He is working towards getting 10 out of 10 and when he does his special treat is a new playstation game – he really wants transformers.

A huge thanks to everyone who sent Alan a card or gift this month. He enjoys receiving them very much. Thanks to Hayley for the pencil case and snow globe from London, he loves it. To Helen for the gifts for Alan and Amy, to Post Pals for the gifts not only for Alan but the yummy chocolates for me too – I really did enjoy them although I shared them so I didn’t feel guilty eating them with all the healthy eating at this time of year. To Jessica for the cards you send every week and the great pictures of London zoo and the postcards. To Shirl, Alan loves your cards and he would like to send you one back if you wouldn’t mind putting an address in please. To Rachel, thank you so much for Alan’s bear card, he loves it. Thanks Sami for the card too. Thank you to Kim Ginger for the Chinese pack of fortune cookies, a book mark, a scroll of the year he was born under, and a pair of chopsticks. He had great fun trying to use them to eat his Chinese meal, so a big thank you for that as he really loved it.

Update 31st December 2008

Alan has had a very busy month. Health wise he is doing ok just now, though he had a port flush in the middle of December, but we don’t need to go back to hospital until 16th January.

We went to see the Wizard of Oz at the Citizens Theatre and Alan got invited to meet the cast. Before Alan was on Post Pals he won a competition in our Scottish national paper – he was awarded the award Our Little Hero and through this got invited to meet the cast. He met Dorothy and the Lion and got to wear the Tin Man’s hat. It was a really lovely afternoon.

We also went to see him in his school show – it was really good and the kids did well. Alan was a bear in the play ‘The little angel’.

During December Alan was so excited waiting for Santa to come. He has been really aware of it all this year and enjoyed the build up to the big day. The letters and gifts from the reindeers really made him feel ever so special and he has them proudly hanging in his bedroom. He got a Rudolph nose and antlers in the Rudolph card and wears them with such pride.

He received lots of cards and gifts from people and your kindness and generosity is much appreciated. It certainly makes him and his big sister feel special.

To Lu, thank you for sending us cards and the letters you sent are really appreciated and very special to us. To June and David Junko, Despina, Kristina, and the Homberg family – these people all sent cards from abroad, so thank you for taking the time to make Alan smile. Thank you to Sarah, Maria, Hayley, Julie, Jessica, Jenny, Helen B, Helen T, Shirley, and Kate D, thank you all for the cards. To the person who sent Alan the letter from Santa – it made his day! He had been asking me about Santa’s good list and when he got the letter he turned to me and said ‘mum i must be on the good list’. It was a very special moment. To Alan and Amy’s elves, thank you very much for their gifts. To Amy’s elf, Jessica, and the person who sent her 4 gifts, thank you so much, she loved everything. To Alan’s elf, Mrs Whittaker, thank you ever so much, Alan loved all his gifts. Also to the person who never put a name on it, thank you. To the Post Pal team, thank you for the gifts. To Grace and Linus, thank you for the book. To Julie Barrett for sending a gift to Alan and Amy. To Jessica, your generosity is really appreciated. Alan looks forward to receiving your cards.

A huge thank you to everyone who has taken the time to send Alan anything right from the time he joined Post Pals. We really do look forward to receiving your post and Alan enjoys replying to them.

Wishing everyone a happy and healthy New Year.

Update 28th November 2008

Alan has had quite a good month and recovered really well from his surgery last month. He is back to his old self and his ears are very much improved so it was all worth it.

He came home last week from school with a certificate for “PUPIL OF THE MONTH” which he got for trying really hard in class and completing all his tasks. I can’t express how proud of him i am, he really has come out his shell since he started at his new school and it is wonderful to see his teachers getting the best out of him.

We have just returned from the pantomime (mother goose) and we all really enjoyed it. We also have a busy weekend ahead as we have Alan’s school Christmas fare tomorrow morning, then Alan has a birthday party in the afternoon, then we are going to see the Wizard of Oz tomorrow night and we’re really looking forward to it.

Alan is having a school concert this year and is playing the middle size bear and his class are singing a song so he has been practicing it and we’re looking forward to see him performing it.

Alan is so excited this year about Christmas and is asking me everyday when the advent calendar starts, so when Monday comes we really are on the count down.

A big thank you to everyone who sent Alan posty this month as it really does light up his day (and ours) knowing that people out there care and think about him. A big thanks to Jessica B, Sami, Karen M, Grace and Linus, Kate Dee, and June Junko and her husband David. Thank you all, it really means a lot to us. Also Thanks to Lu who emails us every week. A big thanks to Jessica for the gift she sent Alan this month, Alan really loved it and had lots of fun building it up with his daddy.

I would like to take the opportunity to thank everyone who has written to Alan and to wish everyone a very merry Christmas. Post Pals have really enriched our lives over the short time Alan has been a pal – we have had lots of different people write to Alan and it is very heartwarming to know people our there really care.

Update 1st November 2008

Alan’s month started off with us finding out that he would require surgery on his ears. It came as a relief in one hand and in the other we were really worried because they had to put him to sleep. His operation took place on the 9th October and it all went according to plan. They removed the gromets from his ears and cleaned his ears all out and he had a week off school and has recovered well from it. While he was off school he has been making model airplanes and painting them with his dad then hanging them from his ceiling in his bedroom and he really enjoys making them. His left ear is still a bit weepy and when we had a hospital appointment on Tuesday they were telling us his left ear is in really poor condition inside and the specialist will see us to see what they can do about it. I just really hope it’s soon. Apart from his ear the hospital is pleased with him as his weight is still the same as last month although he has grown a tiny bit, his lung function this month was really good and they have given us a physio belt for Alan to wear when he is exercising and to say he hates it is a understatement!

We had parents’ night for Alan and the teachers are really delighted with the way he has settled in. His work was really good and his reading has come on since last year. They say that even though he has a lot of medicine to take at school and sometimes he cant get out to play or take gym, he never complains and is a joy to have in the class. I came out feeling really proud of him.

Alan has been really looking forward to Halloween this month and has been really excited on the build up to it. He was at a Halloween party at school and dressed up as a soldier and looked really good. He went out trick or treating with his sister and cousin and enjoyed it.

A huge thank you to everyone who sent Alan cards and gifts this month, they really do cheer him up when he gets post. Thank you to Hayley Thorn, Helen, Julie, Karen (sami), Grace and Linus, Jessica, Maria and Michael and to Post Pals for the Halloween parcels. Alan loved receiving them all and i hope i have not missed anyone as I’m still trying to find a system to remember everyone. Thanks also to Lu who emails us every week to see how we are.

Update 1st October 2008

Alan had a hospital visit today about his ears. They were hoping they were going to clean them out, but no, Alan is going to require surgery to remove the gromits in his ears and relieve the pressure in his ears. The operation has to happen either next week or the week after, we are just waiting on the Doctor’s secretary to get back to us. We are worried but know it is needed to stop the running in his ears.

Update 28th September 2008

Alan has had quite a good month apart from his runny ear which is still causing him problems. It has been a month now and it’s still running. We have had 2 lots of antibiotics with no success, so during a hospital visit on Tuesday our consultant called E.N.T. They seam to think that he has an infection in the gromit and that it will need flushed to clear it. To do this they inject into his ear to try to wash it out and stop the running – it sounds quite painful. We have to go to have it done on Wednesday and I have to say I’m not looking forward to it!

Alan has gained 2.5kg and grown 1.5cm since our last hospital visit and they are really pleased with him.

Alan celebrated his 6th birthday on the 24th and he had a great day. He got lots of nice presents which included a remote control tank, a camcorder, army things, a projector for his room and much more. He invited 6 of his friends to the ten pin bowling then we went to wimpy for a burger and we had his cake we had a army tank cake for him he was over the moon with it.

He has settled in really well at his new school and his class had to choose a pupil council member and Alan was chosen. He was so excited when his dad and I picked him up! He has to go to the meetings and be the spokesperson for his class – I’m so proud of him. He used to be so shy but he has grown into a confident, independent wee boy.

We are looking forward to the beginning of the month when his big sister turns 18. We are going out for a family dinner.

Thank you to everyone who has sent Alan mail this month. Thank you to Hayley Thorn, Jessica, Helen, Linda B, Maria ,Jenny, Sami, Julie, St Mathews Sunday school, Maddie, Grace and Linus, Jennifer, Jade and Juno from the USA. Thanks you to everyone who sent birthday cards and gifts to him as he loves getting them, they really make his day. Also, thank you to Ms Lu who emails us every week to see how we are doing.

Update 30th August 2008

Alan has had quite a good month. He visited the safari park and saw all the animals which he really enjoyed. Alan loves visiting the cinema and we have been a few times this month. We went to see Wall-e, The Mummy, Batman and The Hulk, all of which he really enjoyed. We also had a festival where we live and we went and saw the big parade. It had horses and bands, dancers, people dressed up, and he really loved watching it. We saw a tiny little pony and that was Alan’s favourite part.

He also started a new school and has moved into primary 2. He has made lots of new friends and has settled really well. I was a bit apprehensive about him starting, teaching someone new to do his medication and worrying if they would do it correctly, but Alan’s helper has picked it up really well.

Alan has a bit of a cough and a very runny ear at the moment. The hospital has started him on antibiotics so hopefully he will start to feel better soon. We are hoping he is well for his birthday.

Thank you to everyone who sent Alan cards as he really loves receiving them. To Julie Barret, Kate Dee, Karen (Sami) for her motorbike cards, Helen for her fish card and the lovely fish you sent Alan – they are up in his room, so thank you. Maddie (Vikki’s Nan) and Karen thank you for your postcards. To Hayley Thorn – a big thank you for all the cards you sent Alan, he loved them all, especially the tiger card. Susan for the teddy bear card with the medal, Alan loved it, so thank you. Thank you to Grace for the bubbles and card you sent Alan, he really loved them and they helped with his physio too. To Jessica for Alan’s discover and dig toy – he really loved it and he spent the morning uncovering his treasure, thank you. Big thanks to everyone who emailed Alan too. Alan has been replying to the cards he has received and it’s helping his writing so it’s good when there is an address on it.

Post Pals is a wonderful organisation that has put a smile on Alan’s face when he receives post. When he is under the weather, seeing him smile means the world to us.