Dave and Carolyn Elder from Rainbow Beach Service Centre, update us on Tristan’s progress after his accident two years ago
July marks the two-year anniversary of an accident that changed many lives.
Tristan Sik, a local teenager, had a push bike accident, and was saved by two things – the first responder Marc – and the speed with which LifeFlight Rescue Helicopter transported him to the Lady Cilento hospital.
Because he arrived at the hospital within two hours and ten minutes of the accident, he survived, and is now thriving.
His mother, Carolyn, and stepdad, Dave, have had a roller coaster two years but have survived the enormous highs and lows with strength, resilience and a determination to make things better for anyone else who must travel the same path.
Siblings Paige 12, Jack 11 and April 10, have all adapted to the changes by stepping up, they also have access to a psychologist to help them should they need it.
Mum Carolyn is articulate, positive, and fiercely determined that not only will Tristan get the best of care, but all four children will prosper regardless of what life throws their way.
Carolyn says her husband of five years Dave tends to be a forgotten hero. “We wouldn’t have been able to afford to keep going. It was Dave’s hard work here and my hard work at hospital and home that has got us through. A team effort.
“The key to it is that as a family we stick together and as a parent you make sure the team you have is the right team.
“This is about Tristan’s health and recovery and what we do now shapes the rest of his life. We want him to have the best possible recovery and my job is to advocate for him where needed.”
So how is Tristan? “His personality is the same, he has slow, slurred speech, but he is still the cheeky, smart young man that he was – he is still there and he wakes up happy everyday.
“He is fairly independent at home and tries to do a lot himself, however he has spasticity in his left arm and has a wobble in the right so currently doesn’t have any fine motor skills.
“He likes being back at school, likes being around kids his own age again, he is completing four subjects this year. Recently achieving A+ (40/40) on a standard Year 10 maths test.”
And how can we help? “Continuing to keep our family in your prayers, encouraging us and by having people using or recommending our business services is the best way the community can help.”
Has there been any upsides? “As a parent you cherish their firsts, but to get all of that again when you never thought it would happen, is priceless.”
With tears in her eyes Carolyn says: “There is always the possibility of miraculous outcomes, we will make sure Trist is one of them.”