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Nurse Jaime inspired by son’s fight against brain tumour


After watching her young son battle a brain tumour, Jaime Orr knew there was only one place she wanted to be a nurse.

So when she completed her training two months ago, she joined the neurosciences ward at Mater Private Hospital Brisbane and now supports other patients fighting brain tumours and serious neurological illnesses.

Her son Perry, 6, is doing well after undergoing his own brain surgery – and couldn’t be prouder of his mum.

“Perry was right there cheering me on when I graduated,” Jaime said.

“It was wonderful to share that moment with him and to see how pleased it made him.”

Jaime, 35, of Bracken Ridge, decided to give up running a sign-writing business with her husband and pursue her lifelong dream of becoming a nurse during the COVID-19 pandemic.

It was while she was enrolled in Mater Education’s Diploma of Nursing course last year that scans detected a tumour on Perry’s temporal lobe, after the youngster had begun to suffer seizures.

Perry underwent brain surgery in November and emerged with a scar stretching from his ear to his forehead.

This Sunday (May 12) is International Nurses Day and Jaime says her son’s experience convinced her of the importance nurses have in healthcare – and the difference they make to patients of all ages.

Jaime's son Perry while in hospital

“It was a traumatic experience. Perry’s only six so he obviously hadn’t experienced anything like that before,” Jaime said.

“But it was lovely to watch the nurses interact with him. They were beautiful – just beautiful people!

“They made an effort to involve him in his treatment to make him more comfortable. Their care for Perry was an inspiration to me.”

Jaime said nursing is a demanding but rewarding role.

“Nursing takes empathy, kindness and determination to make sure your patients get the best possible treatment,” she said.

“Seeing Perry’s diagnosis and treatment is the reason why I chose to work on Mater’s neurosciences ward.

“It was my childhood dream to become a nurse and to now be working with neurological patients like Perry is extra special.”

She said husband Michael and Perry’s big sister Holly were as proud of her achievements as Perry.

Her son is expected to make a full recovery, with his scar the only reminder of his fight against cancer.

“He’s taken everything so well – he’s an amazing boy. And we tell him that chicks dig scars!”