This story isn’t easy to read. The tragedy at its core is something few of us can empathize with. Yet the triumph of the spirit is inspiring. It begins with a 9-year-old boy expecting a new baby sister. Only the boy’s days were numbered. He had terminal cancer, but was determined to live long enough to see his new bother.
“Bailey Cooper, from Bristol, battled Non-Hodgkin lymphoma for 15 months and was determined to live love enough to hold his new sibling,” The Daily Mail writes.
Before he passed, Bailey told his parents “You’re only allowed to cry for 20 minutes.”
“His mother Rachel, 28, gave birth to her daughter in November and Bailey named her Millie,” DM writes. “The family have now released pictures of him cradling Millie, for the first time after she was born and the the day before he died on Christmas Eve.”
Bailey made it, but didn’t live long after his sister was born.
“We didn’t think he would last that long, but he was determined to meet Millie,” Rachel said. “It got to the end of November, and Millie was born. He hugged her and did everything an older brother would do – change her, wash her, sing to her.”
“Doctors said he was going to go before Millie was born,” his father added. “He didn’t. He fought, and on the way to hospital, he said we should call her Millie. But the moment after he met her, he began to taper off quickly. He was slipping away.”
After the girl was born, his family told him it was time to go. His grandmother even said she would willingly take his place, but Bailey wasn’t having it. “That is really selfish Nan,” he said. “You have grandchildren to take care of.”
“He knew he was not going to be here for Christmas, but we tried to get him to put together a Christmas list,” his mother said. “He said he didn’t want to, but we encouraged him to.”
“By 11:45am on Christmas Eve, we were by his bedside. We knew it was not going to be long. We told him ‘It’s time to go Bailey. Stop.”
“The moment we said ‘stop’, he took his last breath and had just the one tear come out of his eye. It was peaceful.”
“We were going to get everything he asked for. But most of the stuff he asked for were things he never played with. They were more suited for his little brother. He had picked everything for Riley because he knew he was not going to play with them.”