Ipswich girl, 4 with cancer says 'Barbie looks just like me'
WHEN Erin La Masurier was presented with a special Barbie that "looks just like her" suddenly she didn't feel so different anymore.
The Barbie is one of 108 donated to the Children's Hospital Foundation by Mattel and handed out at the Lady Cilento Children's Hospital where Erin is recovering from surgery.
In December the four-year-old was diagnosed with a rare form of bone cancer in her shoulder blade.
Although scans showed the bone is now cancer free, surgeons have just removed the bone to ensure the disease doesn't spread.
She's lost the use of her arm, but the latest tests show the chemotherapy that claimed her long red locks has also successfully attacked the cancer cells that threatened her young life.
Now, as she hopefully moves into the recovery stage, Erin's new toy is helping make her feel 'normal' again.
"She looks just like me mum," Erin told her mum Beck after a nurse handed her the doll on Wednesday.
"It's super cute to see her playing with a Barbie that looks just like her," Beck said.
"She's just getting into Barbie and it was a really sweet gesture, really thoughtful for the kids.
"Erin is so comfortable here and because she's so bright and bubbly, even though she's sick, she's become one of the nurses' favourite patients.
"She's an absolute ray of sunshine for every doctor and nurse here.
"She's known as 'the fun girl' because she's still sitting in her room, playing games, singing songs and doing dances.
"She's not sad at all so I think it's nice and refreshing for them."
The La Masurier famliy's cancer story began after Erin fell off a swing and complained of a sore arm.
When the swelling wouldn't go away parents Beck and John knew something was wrong and in the week before Christmas they were told it was cancer, following an MRI scan.
But next year Erin will be off to school at Ipswich Grammar and the La Masurier family is hoping to put their terrifying experience behind them.
"She's been such a trooper through the whole thing, but we knew she'd have that attitude.
"She's tough and just gets on with it," Beck said.