A couple from Hounslow have both been battling potentially deadly illnesses as they fight to survive for their miracle twins. Paris Parker, 41, and her husband Hamid Mahdikhani, 43, fell in love 10 years ago and had been living happily together for a few years when their lives changed forever.
Since the summer of 2019, they have faced the loss of two babies and have both been told they have serious illnesses that have left their family living ‘day by day’ while they’re still alive. At just 39 years old, Hamid was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease while his wife Paris was pregnant with their first child.
That same day they were also told that their daughter’s heart had stopped beating inside the womb, and at 32 weeks Paris gave birth to their stillborn baby. “It was horrible,” Hamid told MyLondon, “it’s just coming to that realisation that there’s no cure and digesting the pain of the loss.”
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Several months later their hopes for a family were once again answered when Paris fell pregnant again but, in the summer of 2020 the pair lost their second child at just 20 weeks. Then in July 2021, they finally welcomed their twin baby boys, Liam and Leo.
Hamid gushed: “They’re amazing, without them I don’t think I could cope. They’re the biggest focus in our lives. Although they’re twins they’re so different from each other, they don’t look alike and their personalities are already completely unique.”
But the nightmare was far from over for the young couple. During Paris’s pregnancy her CRP – C-reactive protein, a substance the liver produces in response to inflammation – was consistently raised above normal levels. Although there were concerns, Hamid claims no further tests were done and they were assured that nothing could be investigated further until the babies were safely delivered.
“We tried to get GP appointments and referrals but it was impossible. More should have been done by the medical professionals around us” Hamid said sorrowfully. On Christmas Eve 2021, five months after the twins were born, Paris began feeling concerningly weak.
Hamid rushed her to A&E where doctors confirmed the devastating news that Paris had advanced Stage 4 bowel cancer, and that it had already spread to her liver. The father-of-two said: “We’re both so young, we have dreams for the future and it feels like that’s just been ripped from us.
“I’ve heard her when she prays and she just can’t understand why we’d be blessed with children if we aren’t able to be around to see them grow up. She is the love of my life, she’s truly the perfect person and she doesn’t deserve any of this.”
After completing several cycles of chemotherapy, Paris had thankfully shown a positive response to the drugs and the tumour in her liver shrunk considerably, which then made it operable. In October 2022, more than 70 per cent of her liver was successfully removed, followed by the removal of the primary tumour in the colon a month later.
However, shortly after her recovery scans confirmed that the cancer continued to aggressively spread to more organs. “When I was first diagnosed with Parkinson’s I thought no matter what happens at least I know my boys have Paris, if the time comes then she will hold them together.
“I can’t even think about what life could look like for them now,” Hamid said under his breath. The decision was made to put Paris back on the same group of chemotherapies that she previously responded well to, but this is where their hopes fell apart.
The NHS informed them that it will no longer provide the targeted treatment drug, which had previously been incredibly effective, due to restrictions that will not allow a patient to receive the medicine more than once in a fixed period of time. Their only option now is to privately fund this treatment, but it costs over £2,000 per cycle and they estimate they’ll need a minimum of 10 cycles.
But Paris and Hamid, who worked as an NHS Nutritionist and IT Manager respectively, have been unable to work since their diagnoses. The couple are also struggling with the physical toll of looking after toddlers and are having to finance day-care for Liam and Leo.
Hamid shared: “Everything doubles when you have twins so it’s an expensive feat but we’re just doing what we think is best for them. We try to survive basically, the best we can do is just live life day-by-day.
“Paris tells me there’s no point thinking about the future or the past, that we’re still alive and next to each other and our babies, it’s another day to live. There’s no guarantee for anyone.”
Hamid’s former colleague and family friend, Michael Zucker, is organising a GoFundMe to help support the family with costs. Since speaking to MyLondon, Hamid shared that Paris was once again admitted to hospital.
She has returned home and is now awaiting another surgery. If you would like to donate to Paris and Hamid’s GoFundMe, click the link here.
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