Teen's big thank-you cake bake

Leah Robinson

Leah Robinson

First published in Wantage/Grove Herald Series: Photograph of the Author by

AT JUST 13 years old, the idea of brain surgery was terrifying to Leah Robinson.

The East Hagbourne teenager, a pupil at King Alfred’s, Wantage, went under the knife at Oxford’s John Radcliffe Hospital on March 14 to treat a chiari malformation, a condition which means her brain is too large for her skull.

Her condition was picked up after she had a fit last summer and an MRI scan eventually diagnosed the problem.

But after a two-hour operation, six days in hospital and a month recovering, the youngster is hoping to return to school next month.

To say thank you to the team who treated her, led by neurosurgeon Shailendra Magdum, Leah organised a cake sale with her brother and sister, Nate and Alicia, and raised £160 for the department.

She said: “When I first got told what I had, I didn’t want to have an operation at first, but I knew that surgery was the best option.

“I was scared, but afterwards I felt relieved because it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be.”

When Leah was only 14 months old, she suffered a fit and ended up in intensive care.

At the time doctors believed it was a one-off, and it was not until more than a decade later the problem resurfaced.

Related links

Mum Claire Maynard said she was impressed with the way her daughter had dealt with the surgery.

She said: “It was a big shock, but you pull together really as a family.

“She has been excellent, there hasn’t been any tears or panic.

“I don’t think I could have been like that if it was myself.”

It was Leah and sister Alicia, 10, who came up with the idea of a cake sale to raise money, baking most of the cakes themselves.

Ms Maynard said: “They wanted to do something after spending time in the hospital, seeing other people and what they have to go through.

“It’s also a thank you for the kindness that you receive from the people there.

“They did it all off their own backs, I am really proud.”

The family were alerted to Leah’s fit last summer because she fell out of bed.

Had she been alone or not discovered more quickly, the repercussions could have been more serious.

Ms Maynard said: “All sorts of things go through your mind and you think the worst.

“But I’m glad it did happen and we know what the problem is now and it’s finally hopefully sorted out.”

Comments (6)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

6:21pm Sun 22 Apr 12

kevboy says...

Good on you Leah! Go girl!
Good on you Leah! Go girl! kevboy
  • Score: 0

8:18pm Sun 22 Apr 12

L0RD PETER McVEY OX2 6EG says...

Well done you pretty and strong wee lassie. With an attitude like that, you will go far.
Well done you pretty and strong wee lassie. With an attitude like that, you will go far. L0RD PETER McVEY OX2 6EG
  • Score: 0

10:42pm Sun 22 Apr 12

ox-cabby says...

A special thank you to all the staff and particular the neurosurgeon Shailendra Magdum for giving her that chance. The rest was in the hands of god.
A special thank you to all the staff and particular the neurosurgeon Shailendra Magdum for giving her that chance. The rest was in the hands of god. ox-cabby
  • Score: 0

6:39pm Mon 23 Apr 12

cazzercazzer says...

Well done Leah. It sounds like you have had a fantastic recovery.
I also have Chiari Malformation and had surgery in July last year. I help organise an annual chiari awareness walk on the south coast, in Portsmouth each year for the past 3 years. If you want to get in touch then please email me at CLGibbons1988 @ aol . com (no gaps)
Well done Leah. It sounds like you have had a fantastic recovery. I also have Chiari Malformation and had surgery in July last year. I help organise an annual chiari awareness walk on the south coast, in Portsmouth each year for the past 3 years. If you want to get in touch then please email me at CLGibbons1988 @ aol . com (no gaps) cazzercazzer
  • Score: 0

1:44am Tue 24 Apr 12

International Chiari Association (ICA) says...

All of us at the International Chiari Association (ICA), a nonprofit organization, are so proud of Leah Robinson. For those interested in learning more about Chiari, please visit our web site at www.ChiariAssociatio
n.org . Our web site also has links to our Facebook page and YouTube Channel.

Thanks, Oxford Mail, for posting the article as it also brought awareness to Chiari at the same time.
All of us at the International Chiari Association (ICA), a nonprofit organization, are so proud of Leah Robinson. For those interested in learning more about Chiari, please visit our web site at www.ChiariAssociatio n.org . Our web site also has links to our Facebook page and YouTube Channel. Thanks, Oxford Mail, for posting the article as it also brought awareness to Chiari at the same time. International Chiari Association (ICA)
  • Score: 0

1:47am Tue 24 Apr 12

International Chiari Association (ICA) says...

The ICA's web site address is www.ChiariAssociatio
n.org
The ICA's web site address is www.ChiariAssociatio n.org International Chiari Association (ICA)
  • Score: 0

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree