Laura: Pilgrims Hospices “were a shining light in a very dark time”
Mother’s Day can be a difficult time of year for anyone who has lost that special person.
Laura shares why she chooses to remember her mum, Dorothy, with Pilgrims Hospices’ special online Memory Wall.
My mother, Dorothy, was one of a kind, a dedicated nurse for more than 40 years with the NHS and above all an absolute inspiration to her family, friends and colleagues. I have been asked to share my story about my beautiful mother, but there are no words to truly express what a wonderful woman she truly was.
In the later part of her career, she was a theatre sister and worked with many consultants in the Head and Neck team. I, too, now work within Head and Neck at the William Harvey Hospital, working with the same consultants and I often hear how wonderful Mum was. She was a force to be reckoned with in the best way! Keeping everyone in check and putting her patients first. In fact, the manager of theatres told me: “Dorothy taught me everything I know”.
Another example of Mum’s calibre was completing the Moonwalk with me in 2019. We walked 26 miles from midnight to 8am. This was an amazing achievement, but what many people didn’t realise was that Mum had sprained her ankle the week before and was in a lot of pain. She refused to give up! It took her well over a month to recover from walking that distance. We raised over £1,500 between us for those suffering with breast cancer.
We were lucky enough to be able to keep Mum in the family home throughout her illness, but the contact we had with the hospice was second to none. Whenever we had a query it was answered immediately. Whenever we needed a doctor or a nurse, they were there. They truly were a shining light in a very dark time.
Unfortunately, Mum was diagnosed with cancer in March 2020. It couldn’t have been a worse time as the country experienced its first lock down. It meant we were unable to spend as much time with her, which was very difficult indeed.
She tried a few different treatments but they were unsuccessful, and so she made the brave decision to spend her last few months with family and doing what she could to make memories.
That’s where Pilgrims stepped in. We were lucky enough to be able to keep Mum in the family home throughout her illness, but the contact we had with the hospice was second to none. Whenever we had a query it was answered immediately. Whenever we needed a doctor or a nurse, they were there. They truly were a shining light in a very dark time. They helped us with aids to help Mum move around more easily: different cushions, frames and eventually a hospital bed.
We were also able to take advantage of bereavement counselling after Mum passed. This really helped and was so valuable to us. I am now studying Psychotherapy due to the impact that such a service had on me during the worst time of my life.
We were so very grateful that we all wanted to contribute as a tribute to Mum after she had passed. My father, who has lost the love of his life, gave a donation. My brother raised money by setting up a fishing competition at Hythe. My sister-in-law did a tandem sky dive and I completed a wing qalk. I think that dedication to raising money for Pilgrims speaks volumes about how our family feel.
Thank you Pilgrims, for all that you do; thank you.
Click here to remember someone special with Pilgrims’ online Memory Wall.
Dedications must be made by Sunday 26 March 2023.