As part of our Christmas Appeal this year, we would like to tell you Graham and Pam’s story. Both were cared for by staff from the Hospice and though they are no longer with us, their daughters Lucy and Caroline want to share their story.
Our work is incredibly important, whether we are supporting someone at the end of life or helping their family and friends through the difficult process of bereavement. Christmas is an especially tough time for those of us who have lost someone close and we want to make sure we can help as many people as possible.
If you would like to donate to our Christmas Appeal, please visit our JustGiving page.
Our Dad dearly wanted to help St Peter & St James Hospice this Christmas. The care they had given to mum the year before was so wonderful and meant so much to him. But we lost him too just a few weeks ago to Covid.
The hospice had been caring for Dad for more than a year when Mum got her sudden diagnosis. After she died, he continued to speak to them regularly, sharing the highs and lows of his life without her. He trusted the hospice; Jon, his nurse, above all.
He was about to write down his experiences when he contracted Covid. But, when looking through his emails recently, we found the following words – and we are sharing them with you here.
‘‘Pam fell ill with bowel cancer late in 2019. It was sudden and unexpected. We had bought all the stuff for Xmas and the turkey was in the fridge. After two years looking after me with prostate cancer we had to rally round her.
With the most considerate care from the hospice, we helped her to stay at home for a short while; but soon we had to face up that we couldn’t continue. Come the day, the ambulance arrived and, without looking back, Pam walked to it, thus ending nearly 50 years in our home together.
Pam settled comfortably at the hospice. The staff were all wonderful. On the last day she looked out onto the gardens in early bloom, at myself and family. Not much was said. We all knew what was coming. After a restless night she passed away peacefully, early the next morning. The nurses were so kind and supportive throughout. I don’t know how we would have coped otherwise.
I have now moved into a nursing home and continue to receive attention from the hospice staff. I am quite well at present, going through ‘a good patch’, as they say. But we all know what lies ahead and I am so helped by the reassurances of the hospice staff.”
We are immensely grateful to everyone at St Peter & St James Hospice for the expert, dignified way they cared for both our parents. Dad supported them in his final months as best he could, with all the proceeds of the sale of his house contents given to the hospice when he moved into his nursing home. Our family are planning fundraising events next year, so that we can help the hospice to open their doors to others like Mum and Dad who will need them.
We hope our Dad’s words, written just a few days before he died, will inspire you to support this wonderful local charity this Christmas.
With all best wishes to you and your loved ones.
Lucy and Caroline, daughters to Graham and Pam