A BRAVE little boy who has never been able to walk by himself has finally had a life-changing operation.
Will Laing, six, has always needed splints on his legs and used a walking frame to help him get around.
But, following a monumental fundraising drive, he has had long-awaited pioneering surgery and is ready for a new start in life.
The Shotton youngster is in hospital recovering from a complex spinal operation he had at Frenchay hospital in Bristol on Tuesday.
The ‘dorsal rhizodomy procedure’ will allow his weaker leg muscles to develop, greatly increasing his chance to walk on his own.
Will’s family had originally planned to take him to the US for the pioneering surgery but the procedure has since been introduced in some English hospitals including Frenchay.
Speaking to the Leader from his bedside, his mum., Michaela Dalton, 24, said she was glad to have reached the end of a stressful two year period of waiting and fundraising.
She said: “I’m just relieved it’s all over.
“I’m glad he’s OK. It’s not been as bad as we’d expected.
“Will’s managing the pain brilliantly. He’s a little trooper.
“He’s back to normal, playing on his iPad. He’s happy as Larry.
“He’s been laughing and joking with the nurses and said the best thing about being stuck in bed all day is playing on his iPad.”
“It’s not all rosy. He’s has been quite sick – but it’s all part of the progression.”
Will’s op came about through two years of fundraising by his family and friends.
Their efforts generated £32,000 and the procedure alone cost a staggering £22,500.
The remainder will go towards providing extra physiotherapy and equipment for Will’s future development.
Michaela added that raising money for the operation was challenging.
She said: “The fundraising proved very stressful and waiting for a date for the operation was a really long time.
“We were expecting it to be quite traumatic but it’s been worth it to get to this point.
”We’re glad it’s all over and we can move forward now. Everything he achieves now is forever.
“I’m glad he’s on the road to recovery.”
Michaela is now hopeful that Will could make a return to Penarlag CP School as early as next month.
“We’re hoping he’ll be home on October 11 then he’ll be able to go back to school on a part-time basis from November 4,” she said.