LUCAS WENT TO BED AND NEVER WOKE UP
WOMAN'S OWN|October 19, 2021
Stacey Fleetwood, 42, is living every mother’s worst nightmare
ASHLEIGH PAGE, JOE CUSACK
Relaxing on a sun lounger, I glanced over at my son Lucas, 14, and laughed. He was about to dive-bomb into the pool, much to the delight of his little brothers Oliver, 11, and Carter, six. It was the end of August 2019 and we were nearing the end of an amazing holiday in Majorca. My husband Daniel, then 39, and I had decided to treat the kids to a few days away before the new school term started, so that we could relax and enjoy the sunshine.

We’d had the perfect week and Oliver was starting at the local high school. Though he was nervous, he was looking forward to having his big brother there. ‘I’ll show you around, don’t worry,’ Lucas reassured him. Lucas was such a kind boy, with lots of friends, and he loved music and parkour - a type of free running. Full of energy, we always joked that he couldn’t just walk down the street normally, he had to be climbing something or swinging around a lamp post.

We loved that Lucas was so lively, though, as when he was a baby he’d been born with 12 holes in his heart, diagnosed with a heart murmur and a heart defect that’s known as congenitally corrected transposition of the great arteries (CCTGA). To begin with, we worried what that would mean for Lucas’ future, but he soon showed us that nothing was going to hold him back.

NO WARNING

He went for yearly check-ups but they always came back clear and, a lot of the time, we forgot all about Lucas’ heart problems as he was so fit and healthy.

When we got home from our holiday, Oliver had his first day at high school, but I knew Lucas would be looking out for him, so I wasn’t worried.

That night, we sat and ate dinner as a family, and afterwards Lucas told me it was the best meal he’d ever had. ‘Cheeky! I cook nice food every day!’ I laughed, wrapping my arms around him and giving him a kiss goodnight.

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