Dave was diagnosed with Oesophegeal cancer in February 2019, and he was then referred to the Hospice for support. He is currently attending our Zoom Day Services.
"When I first started Day Services I was lucky because I was able to attend in person. I was quite nervous as I didn't know what to expect, but as soon as I walked in I relaxed. It was a craft session that afternoon and I also got to have a coffee and a chat with others who were in the same situation as me. It was nice that other people cared about how I felt and I didn't feel alone. I was treated as an individual, not just a person with cancer.
When COVID hit, Day Services stopped for some time but I was called by one of the Hospice Community Nurse Specialists to see if there was anything I needed. It was great to know the support was still there, I didn’t feel abandoned despite everything being put on hold.
I'm now on my second six week Day Services programme through Zoom. Being able to communicate with other people again and see familiar faces is fantastic. I know in my mind that I'm going to die earlier than most people, but when I'm with others who are also going through what I'm going through, it doesn't scare me anymore.
Day Services helps me so much because I've been isolating for nearly a year now. The sessions give my week structure and they're something to look forward to. The Hospice also really made me appreciate the time I've had with my family, and the limited time we've got left together. If I could say one thing to Katie and Caroline from the Hospice it would be thank you for being there when I needed it most."
Dave's wife and carer Angela tells us about how she was also feeling scared and apprehensive when Dave first had to go to the Hospice. "I went with him to make sure he settled in okay. We didn't know what to expect but straight away my mind was put at ease.
The Hospice also offers virtual sessions for carers which I've been taking part in. I'd never done Zoom before so I was quite shy about being on camera but by the end, I relaxed and I felt a lot more comfortable. I was able to get stuff off of my chest about how I felt, things I'd held in before.
Before when people asked me if I was OK I would say I'm fine, I didn't like to let my barriers down. But after doing the Carer sessions with others who were going through what I'm going through, I realised I wasn't okay and that I could tell everyone that, it was a huge weight off my shoulders. The sessions are a safe space where I can talk openly about how I feel but also have a laugh!
I find the programmes absolutely brilliant. Katie and Caroline who run the sessions have been so supportive. You can talk to them about anything, even if it's something silly. They're heroes in my eyes."Back to News