ON GOOD Friday a mum will be celebrating her son’s 29th birthday - a milestone she feared he might not make.

In an alternative universe, Tharel Thompson would be enjoying the day back home in Barbados, refreshed from his holiday seeing family in the UK.

But instead, the 28-year-old lighting technician is at the Royal Berkshire Hospital recovering from his injuries after he was stabbed in the head at Walkabout nightclub on February 11.

In his mother’s words, Tharel is “lucky to be alive”. He was close to death - the blade narrowly missed his brain.

In an interview with the Chronicle nearly seven weeks after the event which turned their lives upside down, Yvonne Thompson has opened up about her son’s road to recovery.

“The doctors kept saying they didn’t know if he was going to make it. He is really lucky to be alive. Something striking your head is instant death. It hit his right temple and touched his brain, he had a stroke at the same time. He is just so lucky to be able to speak properly and he still has his memory.

“The Lord isn’t ready for Tharel to go yet, he has a got a job for him to do on this earth,” she said.

As well as recovering from being stabbed, Tharel faces the threat of a £200,000 medical bill from the NHS.

The 46-year-old marketing assistant, from Clermont St Michael, had no idea what dark days were ahead when she waved goodbye to her beloved son in February for what should have been a holiday of a lifetime.

It was the first time Tharel had been back in the country since he was five. Yvonne said: “He couldn’t wait to go back to Buckingham Palace, see the London Eye. To see all the sights he visited when he was a small child.”

But that trip never happened. Because the night before, Tharel was attacked. He has no memory of that moment, according to this mum. Just hours later his mum Yvonne was on a flight from Barbados to London, a flight she described as “the longest of her life”.

She said: “It was really stressful at first when I came into hospital and saw him on all of these machines, I thought is this for real? I hardly slept. But as he started to come out of his coma, his personality started to show,” she said. “I told him to put his foot down, so he wasn’t on show to the ward. He said to me, ‘Mum, you always worry about the wrong things!’”

Yvonne said she believed “prayers” and Tharel’s fitness has helped keep him alive. “The doctors said his youth and his body helped him survive this attack.”

Every day for the last six weeks, Yvonne has been spending all day at the hospital at her son’s side. She said: “Tharel just wants to thank everyone who sent prayers for him - all of Barbados too. He makes me read out every single comment, he really appreciates them.”

The family are also grateful for donations towards Tharel’s medical costs, with a online fundraiser currently totalling £24,719 of the £200,000 goal.

In terms of what is next for Tharel, his mother said it will be months until he is will be well enough to fly home, saying: “He still requires major surgery to repair his head - his brain is still exposed. It will take months until they are able to operate. He will likely have to be moved into a respite centre but they don’t know where yet because he’s not a British citizen.”

But for now, there is the matter of Tharel’s 29th birthday to celebrate.