Newcastle skating and surfing star Sabre Norris is facing a tough medical condition, but her siblings are doing everything they can to help her.
Sabre, 13, is a highly talented skateboarder and surfer, who has made waves around the world for her athletic ability, intelligence and humour.
She’s conquered big skateboard ramps and waves – now she faces a big challenge with her health.
She has been diagnosed with the condition Chiari malformation, which causes her brain tissue to extend into her spinal canal.
Sabre remains determined to compete for Australia at the 2020 Olympics.
“The medical result means I need to show more heart and put in more hours than anyone else,” she said.
Sabre said her goal remains to “represent my country, hopefully at the Olympics in skateboarding”.
It’s thought that her condition may be affecting her pituitary gland because she hasn’t been growing.
“I’ve got to learn to live with it,” Sabre said.
“If you’ve got something wrong with you, you’ve got to accept it and not hide it.
“You need to tell someone about it, so you don’t feel so alone.”
It’s been difficult for Sabre, but she has a lot of support.
“I do cry in my bed a lot,” she said.
“I’m scared of it getting worse and not being able to skate and surf again.
“I’ve got a good brother and good sisters and they always help me through it and give me a lot of cuddles.”
Sabre and her brother Biggy and sisters Sockie and Naz have been making successful videos on social media.
The videos show a strong connection and much love between the siblings.
“I’m very lucky to have the family that I have,” Sabre said.
“They’re always there for me, they care about how I feel and they’re very selfless.”
Sockie, 10, gives Sabre lots of love.
“It’s a little bit tricky, she is going through a tough time,” Sockie said.
“We’re always going to be there for Sabre. Hopefully it all works out because we love her.”
Biggy, 9, said he gives Sabre hugs and motivational speeches to help her.
“I say ‘Sabre, you can do it, you’re the best. You can skate your way to the Olympics and you can be anything’.”
One symptom of the condition is scoliosis, which Sabre has been diagnosed with.
However, she has no other symptoms and has been able to continue skateboarding and surfing.
She was skateboarding at Bondi Skate Park on Tuesday morning, before heading for an MRI scan in Sydney for a further analysis of her condition.
Her dad, Justin Norris, won a bronze medal in the 200-metre butterfly at the Sydney 2000 Olympics.
Sabre’s athletic talent and sense of humour led to an appearance on The Ellen Show in 2016.
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