Meet Harry

Harry Spillane from Co. Cork was just six days old when he was diagnosed with a very rare metabolic condition called ‘Tyrosinaemia Type 1’ – so rare in fact that he was only the second child in the country with the condition.

Mum Lorraine says, “I can clearly remember the day we arrived in Temple Street. It was a really bright sunny day but my heart felt heavy.” Lorraine kept thinking it was a mistake and that Harry didn’t have a medical condition as he looked perfectly healthy.

“I will never forget entering the hospital and meeting the wonderful doctors and nurses – I just knew that everything was going to be fine.”

Lorraine says it was a difficult time for the family. “The most challenging part of having a child in hospital is the separation from our other two boys. In the initial stages of Harry’s diagnosis, we were up in Temple Street quite a lot and it was very hard for us all as a family.”

But she says that her family has such admiration for Temple Street.

“The doctors and the nurses – everyone is just so passionate about what they do and show such kindness to all the children.”

Harry is now three years old and skipped into the hospital for his last visit – excited to see the doctors and nurses who he calls his friends.

Lorraine says, “This brought a tear of both sadness and joy to my eyes – sadness in the sense that he is always going to have Tyrosinaemia, which will require life-long management. And joy because he was genuinely so excited to see everyone again.”

She says that until you experience a child with an illness or condition, that it’s hard to understand what it’s like to be part of a hospital environment for life. But she maintains that they feel very privileged to be part of the Temple Street family.

“Everybody’s life is packaged differently. We were given the most beautiful little boy with a rare condition, who has brought so many wonderful gifts with him into our lives. There is nothing that we would change about our lives. We are so fortunate to be part of the Temple Street world, where all the wonderful nurses and doctors make Temple Street so special with their ongoing passion and dedication for what they do. Thank you Temple Street.”