Earlier this year Kye Costa decided to roll up his sleeves and support his big brother Noah after he was diagnosed with a rare type of cancer, fibrolamellar hepatocellular carcinoma. But now it’s Kye’s turn to take centrestage with a featured role in this year’s Schools Spectacular, while Noah cheers from the sidelines.
Kye’s mother, Ruth Costa, said she was proud of her seven-year-old and that it was important for him to get some deserving attention, too.
She said it was only a matter of time before people noticed his talent and was proud he earned the role himself.
“I’ve tried my hardest to make sure both of my kids know that as parents we’re doing our best for the family and we don’t want Noah’s cancer to completely overtake Kye and his achievements. He got this featured role on his own. He’s been in the spotlight due to our family circumstances with Noah. But they wouldn’t give a role to a child based on the fact his brother has cancer – Kye has been able to showcase what he’s made of and that’s been one of the most positive things lately,” she said.
“The students had to audition to get into Schools Spectacular. And although Kye wasn’t in the dance group at Hoxton Park Public School, he had the top skills in gymnastics. So when the school was asked if they had a child who could rollerblade they put Kye forward for the opportunity.
“He’ll be one of the characters who’ll have a lasting impact on people. He’ll be remembered as the little dragon.”
And it’s not Kye’s first achievement this year.
In September he won gold in the NSW State Championships at the Spring State Fair where he also helped to raise funds for his brother’s cause.
“The reward at the end was helping spread awareness which will aid in his brother’s treatment and future.”
But she said now, Kye is focusing on Schools Spectacular, serving as a good distraction to some of the hardships the family has faced in recent times. He began rehearsing for his act about four weeks ago and has already been featured on Sunrise on Seven where he demonstrated his talent for the upcoming role.
“He’s so excited – he just wants to make people happy. In addition to rehearsals he’s also doing four hours of gymnastics a week. I’ve been getting good feedback that he’s like the little star of the show which is nice to hear, especially with the competitive nature and with what’s happening at home.”
She said Kye has really stepped up at home, too.
“Kye understands things with Noah have changed and they can’t play the way they used to. He watches out for him all the time now like when they’re on the trampoline. He’ll call out to me when it’s time for Noah to stop.
“I can tell Kye misses mucking round with his brother and just being boys – he misses his brother that way. But he does a lot for Noah. He’s just got that sweet nature about him. Kye will get up and pour Noah a bowl of cereal in the morning if he’s slow and will get his socks out for him. Kye’s the organised one.”
But she said Noah has struggled to deal with his brother’s achievements.
“Noah was a little bit jealous at first because he can’t do what Kye can do – he gets tired easily these days. But he’s proud in his own way and has accepted he doesn’t have the energy or stamina anymore. He gets frustrated that he can’t do what he used to do but he’s happy for Kye.
“He even woke up early to watch Kye when he was on Sunrise and he’s going to two shows to watch him in Schools Spectacular on November 24 and 25.”
Despite many of the struggles Mrs Costa said things could be taking a turn for the good – with Kye’s role in Schools Spectacular and some excellent news about Noah. For months the family were concerned about a ball found on Noah’s chin. But it’s just been confirmed it’s not cancerous.
“We were so relieved when they told us it was a lymph node. The hospital said it was nothing to be concerned about and that we’d just have to watch for any changes. His next scheduled MRI won’t be until mid-December. We’re looking forward to getting the all-clear so we can enjoy Christmas. It’d be the best Christmas present!”
The busy mother said the family were still trying to raise awareness and funds for the Fibrolamellar Cancer Foundation. They’ve already raised $5,150 but hope to reach at least $10,000.
A fundraising trivia night and costume party for adults has been organised at Hoxton Park Public School for December 8. Mrs Costa hopes people will have a good time.
The theme is “What I want to be when I grow up”.
“We’re expecting about 200 people – we’ve already sold 80 tickets.”
- Details: Hoxton Park Public School, 9607 0005.