THE generosity of Colac and district has amazed Colac’s Mayer family.
Makayla Mayer, 10, and her parents Leanne and Greg Mayer are nearing the end of a six-month ordeal after Makayla dislocated two vertebrae in her neck.
Leanne Mayer said the cause of her daughter’s injury was a mystery.
“She had a bath, wrapped a towel around her head and she just stood in the kitchen and started screaming,” Mrs Mayer said.
“She had a tilt in her head and a turn, she had no movement in one side and a lot of headaches,” she said.
Mrs Mayer said a doctor, chiropractor and acupuncturist were unable to diagnose Makayla, until a visit to Corangamite Clinic’s Ian Mackay in February.
A CT scan led Makayla to Melbourne’s Royal Children’s Hospital where doctors put her in traction, attaching a weight to her head to stretch out her spine.
“Because she’s still growing, the vertebrae actually grew in that spot, but we had the best of the best surgeon there, Dr Ian Torode,” Mrs Mayer said.
“We thought they would put her into day surgery, click her back in place and send us home, but with your spinal cord, you’ve got to be so careful.”
Doctors kept Makayla in the children’s hospital for nearly four weeks until Good Friday, which coincided with the hospital’s record-breaking Good Friday Appeal.
Television stars from Packed to the Rafters and Winners and Losers visited Makayla during the appeal, which raised $15.8 million for the hospital.
Colac and district residents donated more than $120,000 towards the appeal.
“The Colac support, I think they raised $23,000, and you’ve got Beeac raising $20,000 as well – for the size of our town that’s pretty good going,” Mrs Mayer said.
“We’ve had people looking after the family here and the support from Elliminyt Primary School has been tremendous,” she said.
“Someone dropped off movie tickets in our letterbox and didn’t say who they were. People are really, really kind and they are always thinking of you.”
The hospital’s Starlight Room and visits from “huge” dogs have kept Makayla happy during her treatment.
Makayla said her life was getting back to normal and she thanked her parents, brothers and school for their support.
She said a CT scan would show if she needed to remain in a head brace, which meant sponge baths for at least another month.
“I’m looking forward to having a shower,” she said.