Charlie Proctor, a boy from a village in Lancashire, England, died last week, over two years after first being diagnosed with hepatoblastoma, a rare cancerous tumor — and his mom is keeping his memory alive by sharing the touching story of their last moments together.
On Saturday, the 5-year-old boy’s mother, Amber Schofield, penned an emotional note on Facebook, writing that Charlie died in his sleep the previous night, “cuddled in my arms with daddy’s arms wrapped around us.”
“Last night at 23:14 my best friend, my world, Charlie, took his final breath,” she wrote. “Our hearts are aching. The world has lost an incredible little boy.”
“You have been not only our biggest inspiration but you have been an inspiration to thousands of people all over the world. You showed me what love really means Charlie,” she added. “Now it’s time to fly, I am so, so proud of you. You fought this so hard. My baby, I’m hurting so much. I will forever miss you baby bum. Sweet dreams.”
Alongside the heartbreaking note, Schofield shared a happy family photo of herself and her husband Ben Procter with their son.
Just one day earlier, in a message that was dated just hours before Charlie’s death, his mother shared that Charlie’s health was getting worse.
“As the days go by he deteriorates more and more. He no longer looks like Charlie,” she wrote. “He’s so thin, I can see and feel every bone in his tiny body, his sunken face, his rolling eyes. Where has my chunky baby gone.”
Chronicling her son’s state of mind, she wrote, “He’s sad, he’s tired, he’s fed up and depressed. ‘I don’t know what to do anymore’ are his main words.”
“Today, he’s been very agitated, wanting to lay down, sit up, lay in bed, then on the beanbag, then on the sofa, then back upstairs and so on…charlie, at one point, turned to me and said in the most quiet, painting voice, ‘Mummy, I’m so sorry for this,’” she wrote, adding that her heart broke hearing her son apologize for wanting “to move again.”
“No child should feel the emotions Charlie is feeling. No Child! No parent should watch their child slowly go” she added.
Concluding the post, the boy’s mother wrote that she missed the boy her son used to be, before his illness.
“I miss just having a chat, a cuddle that doesn’t cause pain. I miss squeezing him and kissing him all over. I miss his smile, knowing I won’t see that smile again other than in picture. I will never hear charlie laugh again,” she wrote. “Hold your babies tight and cuddle and kiss them so much. You don’t realize how lucky you are. We all take life for granted.”
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According to Stanford’s Children Hospital, hepatoblastoma “is a very rare cancerous tumor that starts in the liver” and “primarily affects children from infancy to about 3 years of age.” Charlie was first diagnosed with hepatoblastoma in February 2016, the Manchester Evening News reported.
Although the child went into remission from his liver cancer following surgery at Birmingham Children’s Hospital, his cancer eventually returned, according to CTV News.
“Just came across this beautiful child and I would like to help him. Please help me help him if you can. Thank you 🙏. @charlies_chapter,” the singer wrote on Instagram last month.
Pink went on to donate £10,000 (about $11,244) to help Charlie, according to U.K. newspaper The Sun.