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Daughter of Harry Potter actress Rakie Ayola has spent 4years waking up every morning thinking she’s in France after suffering holiday infection

Thursday, 14 September 2017

Tansy Smethurst, the daughter of actress Rakie Olufunmilayo Ayola who plays Hermione in the Harry Potter stage play, has spent four years waking up every morning thinking she’s in France after developing severe memory loss from holiday infection.

The actress who was born in Wales to a Sierra Leonean mother and a Nigerian father, was on Holiday with her 13-year-old daughter in France when she developed spots on her body and was rushed to hospital in 2013.

According to reports, she had an emergency surgery to remove a brain cyst and later suffered a serious infection that left her with severe memory loss.

After having done 12 operations, since they returned home in Greenwich, south east London. Tansy woke up every day believing she was still on holiday in France

Explaining her daughter’s condition, the 48-year-old actress told The Sun: ‘She still has memory issues, for example when we drive to see family in Wales she will ask several times on the journey where we are going.

‘There are moments when someone asks how you are and you burst into tears.’ She couldn’t even remember her hospital room.

‘Once she was up and walking she would go to the bathroom and come back and not recognise her room – even though hers was the one decorated with balloons and the room next door was empty. She had no clue.

‘I noticed one time she only identified her room because my coat was there and she remembered my coat. Even now, if something new happens she struggles. Routine is very good for her.

According to her, Tansy suffers from the genetic disorder Neurofibromatosis Type 1, which causes benign tumours to develop on nerve endings throughout the body.

Rakie added: “I’d never heard of the condition before Tansy was diagnosed.

“Things started to slot into place after that. At primary school Tansy had been tested for dyslexia, but the results came back that although she didn’t have dyslexia, she had some difficulties with comprehension. It linked into the learning difficulties that are another potential symptom.”

“We had to cope. There are moments, particularly when you least need it such as on the school run with Shani, when someone asks how you are and you burst into tears.

“It hits you unawares in all sorts of ways. I was emotional and angry too. I was angry at a lot of people, angry at the nurses, I was constantly apologising and crying too.”

It was also gathered that a recent scan showed that Tansy has largely recovered.

Source: Linda Ikeji’s blog

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