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Siobhan and Karen's Story

Karen and Siobhan smiling at each other in the Hospice Summer House
Siobhan remembers her mum Karen, who was cared for by the Hospice at home and on the In-Patient Ward. She describes what the Hospice nurses meant for her mum and family.

“ Just knowing you have the Hospice nurses there to help is so valuable. ”

karen and her husband

“My mum was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2013. She spent eight years fighting to live as long as she could.

Facing terminal illness does give you a different perspective on what is really important. You focus on the every day, being loving and happy. We were already a very close family, but it means you don’t argue about the small things any more.

Mum adored her family, and spending time in her garden, and with the help of the Hospice, we took each day at a time, making the most of those everyday things.

One of the biggest things the Hospice helped with was managing mum’s pain. In the last couple of years Mum used a wheelchair because of her pain levels as the cancer had spread. It made things like walking and going up and down the stairs very hard. It affected most things we did, but the Hospice showed us there is always a way to improve things and to make it easier for your loved one.

We were referred to the Hospice’s occupational therapy team who helped us with equipment for the house. These things helped mum manage day to day and helped keep things as normal as possible.

Hannie, the nurse who visited mum at home, gave us so much support. She helped us so much with mum’s medication and managing her pain, making sure mum had everything she needed. We knew we could talk to her about anything. The Hospice nurses are always there when you need them.

The team are there for the whole family, not just mum. It was brilliant for me, they always asked how I was doing too. I knew that I could ring with any concerns at any time of the day or night.

“ As someone in that situation, that is exactly what you need. You need to know that at the drop of a hat, you have someone to call on. ”

Karen and Siobhan smiling at each other in the Hospice Summer House

They deal with everything so quickly, when mum was experiencing symptoms or problems everything was put in place to help us so fast, whether it be a phone call, a visit or providing us with additional equipment to help with mum’s everyday life.

Mum stayed at the Hospice on three occasions; two for pain control and the final stay was for end of life care. The nurses work so hard, they are so friendly and helpful, they are exactly who you need when you are facing one of the most difficult things.

Mum had always said she wanted to be at the Hospice for end of life care and we can never truly thank the nursing team enough for allowing mum’s passing to be peaceful and pain free, just as she wanted. Hannie, Laura, Liz, Kim, Nicky and Julie to name just a few – they are all truly amazing, and we will be forever thankful for them all. Mum will always and forever be loved and missed by many.”

Four Nurses facing camera

"If you can, please join me in supporting the Hospice this year and making sure anyone who needs the care of a Hospice nurse will have them walk through their door, just like my family did."

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