When Brian was diagnosed with a grade four brain tumour late last year, it came as a huge shock to his whole family. Here his son Ed, explains how the care provided by Peace Hospice Care helped the whole family through a very difficult time.
After a long stay in hospital following surgery on the tumour, and weeks at home being supported by Peace Hospice Care’s community team, Dad spent his last 36 hours as an inpatient at Peace Hospice. As soon as we arrived, we wished we’d got him there sooner.
It was the perfect environment for him. You expect this medical, maybe even clinical atmosphere. And although there were obviously elements of that, the overriding sense was one of calm and tranquility. There’s none of the bustle synonymous with a hospital, but peace and privacy for patients and families.
He was more relaxed – and Mum was too – once they got into the hospice. Once there, he was still responsive for a few hours, but then he slipped into a deeper sleep. Mum stayed with him, and I arrived around midday on Friday. We sat together for several hours. Then I popped back to Mum’s house to get her a change of clothes.
I got back around 6pm. I remember we were watching a gardening programme on the TV. Suddenly, Dad’s breathing changed, and I went to get a nurse. I was gone for maybe 30 seconds. In that time, Mum said he let out a couple of gasps, then passed away in her arms.
My two brothers arrived within an hour or two and we sat with him for a couple of hours. It meant so much to have the time and privacy to sit with him for as long as we needed to, without anyone bringing out the paperwork or making us feel there was ever any rush. And then, when we had questions, the staff answered them calmly and kindly. We finally left around midnight with a very weird mix of emotions – devastation, relief and more.
A home from home for patients in a calm and comfortable environment.
Bereavement, Listening and Talking Therapies
Counsellors and trained listeners provide emotional support for those facing life-changing illness or bereavement.
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