Chris` message - St Peter`s Hospice
w we’ h all
not go our own.”
me on our
My name is Chris, I’m only 63, but my wife Sarah and I are dealing
with a situation that no-one should have to face alone.
Back in 2011, I’d been making more frequent visits to the bathroom
during the night for a few months. So Sarah (who is a retired Health
Care Assistant) made sure I went for a check-up with our GP. The
shock for both of us when it was confirmed that I had prostate cancer
and that it had spread to my bones was overwhelming.
This terminal prognosis left us both terribly frightened.
Thankfully I was referred to St Peter’s Hospice where I first met a
Community Nurse Specialist (CNS) who stepped in to help me and Sarah
deal with what lay ahead of us.
I was really worried about what was going to happen to me. I was really
worried about what was going to happen to Sarah. How were we going to
get through this? I clammed up; I wasn’t dealing very well with it all.
Jane Tyson is my CNS and thankfully we hit it off straight away and
have developed a close bond. Slowly she’s helped me open up and talk
about how I’m feeling. She has been a huge support to Sarah as well,
which makes me really happy.
Sarah and Jane work together to support me now, particularly since I
now know I want to die at home. Having Jane visit us is a godsend.
Sarah feels it’s a huge weight off her shoulders, knowing Jane is there to
talk to me and manage my pain. We know we’re not going through all
this on our own. I wish she could be here all the time! Thankfully she’s
on the end of the phone whenever Sarah or I need help.
She seems to understand every situation and makes sense of it for us.
She treats us like human beings, like we’re still husband and wife, rather
than a dying man and his carer. She’s helped us both in so many ways
– sorting carers, finding respite care for Sarah so she can sleep through
the occasional night, helping us with claiming benefits. The list goes on.
These nurses are a major lifeline and an absolute necessity. For us, Jane
is the whole package – she’s like a good friend, but with medical
knowledge. I don’t know how we would have got through these last years
without Jane. Thanks to her continued support in helping us both deal
with this situation, we are very much looking forward to our daughter’s
wedding in June, which is something I never thought I’d say.
The CNS they need to recruit will be just as important to someone else
like me in the future, so please, if you can, support this amazing charity
today, because I know first-hand the incredible difference they are
making to our lives right now.
Thank you for taking the time to read this letter.
Sadly, Chris passed away at home on Saturday 21 May with Sarah by his
side. Sarah is adamant we still use their story to help raise funds to
employ one more Community Nurse Specialist.
So please, if you can, donate:
using the donation form enclosed
online at www.stpetershospice.org/CNSAppeal
by calling 01275 391400 (9am - 4pm, Monday - Friday)