In December 2016, the Khan family got news about their son that immediately changed their lives.
“He kept complaining about this headache and he was vomiting,” his mother Adita Khan said.
After requesting a CT scan, they found out that then ten-year-old Aamir had a brain tumour.
“It was like an unreal feeling because we didn’t know what was next,” his father Shamir Khan said yesterday.
“It was devastating for the entire family,” his mother added.
Five years later, this year the Khan family received more news about Aamir, now 15, that once again shifted the direction of their lives.
However, this time it was more on the positive side, as he passed for his first choice in the Secondary Entrance Assessment (SEA) exams, Trinity College East.
“It was a feeling of ecstasy, joy, happiness,” father Shamir said.
To get to this point was not easy for the Khan family. Having to see their son go through surgery and his recovery afterwards forced them to be stronger than they ever had to be.
“When they was wheeling him, seeing him in ICU, the noises he used to make because he couldn’t talk…he wanted us to stay but he couldn’t leave…we only had 15 minutes with him,” his parents explained.
His mother said she would go into the bathroom and cry when she couldn’t take it anymore because she didn’t want to scare her son, and when he returned from hospital they had to teach him how to walk, talk and even eat all over again.
“We always kept him positive…no negative around him. He used to say if he did the surgery he would die and I would say no there is a 50/50 chance and you are going to live,” his mother said.
“There is a God, I must say, there is a God for true, we can testify.”
Eventually, Aamir rejoined the school system in Standard Three and started SEA preparations. He said the process was not an easy one but he stayed positive.
“It was really frustrating at first, going through some late nights, studying for creative writing, math…it was really frustrating sometimes. I would break down crying or in anger, but the day of the exam I started to feel happier, more jolly to overcome the fear,” Aamir said.
Yet, when he saw the SEA result last Thursday, he was left speechless.
“I just staring at the paper while my mom and dad was hugging me up. I didn’t even react,” he said.
Aamir is excited to begin this new journey at his new school, but is concerned that his learning may be impacted due to his hearing, which was affected during chemotherapy. He cannot hear in his left ear, throwing off his balance.
His mother Adita said all their appointments at the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex have been cancelled.
Aamir and his family want to schedule an appointment with an ENT specialist as soon as possible, so he can play his favourite sport, cricket, for his new school and follow in West Indies cricketers Sunil Narine and Darren Sammy’s footsteps.
His father worries about his integration into physical school but Aaamir is not phased, as he said keeping a positive mindset and believing in God got him through one of the toughest times in his life, so moving forward that’s his approach.
“Always pray to God,” Aamir said.