“The Hospice is a sanctuary of kindness”

Page 12 - Your Story - Debbie Bird

Graham had Motor Neurone Disease and was admitted to the Hospice in July 2022 after a chest infection to review his medication.

The family hadn’t recognised how advanced his illness had become, however with the support, compassion, and care of the staff at the Hospice they were able to start preparing for end-of-life care. Graham stayed at the Hospice for three weeks and found the garden a beautiful place to sit with his family and visitors.

His wife Debbie told us “The Hospice Garden became a place to breathe, reflect, cry, to sit together and eat lunch and to share precious time with Graham, it brought us peace and tranquillity during a very difficult and sad time in our lives.”

Whilst Debbie spent up to 12 hours a day beside Graham, she was supported by Tracey, Ward Sister to create a mosaic of a cornflower. Cornflowers symbolise love, tenderness, unity, and remembrance which felt particularly poignant to Debbie.

“Tracey was fantastic at helping me to engage in a creative activity whilst sitting with Graham. She provided me with the outline, board and mosaic tiles in then right colours and I sat quietly creating the mosaic, watching Graham while he slept in the chair.

It was an emotional time and I love the final result, I got a photo tile printed of it and that is now on my bedroom wall with a picture of us both in happier times.”

“Everyone who cared for Graham and supported us was so respectful, kind and compassionate. The Hospice is a sanctuary of kindness, and I can’t thank the staff and volunteers enough for the care they showed us.

As Graham moved in to end-of-life care, it was agreed that he would be cared for at home, supported by the FNH@Home Team and Sue, Palliative Care Specialist Physiotherapist.  Debbie told us “Graham wanted to pass away at home with me and his children. The support we received from the whole team was incredible as it gave us the confidence to care for him at home in his final days.

When we came home, we knew that we had limited time together. Graham passed away on 11th December 2022 peacefully in my arms in his home. I am comforted knowing I was able to support his final wishes.”

You might also enjoy

Get In touch