Shipston Home Nursing – Jenn’s Story

Title for Jenn's Story

On Friday 16th June, cellist George Wilkes will be performing a recital to raise funds for Shipston Home Nursing, in memory of his grandmother Jenn. You can find out more about the recital and book tickets here.

This is Jenn’s story, as told by her husband Laurie. We are extremely grateful to Laurie for sharing this with us.

“Jenn was diagnosed with a cancer too far advanced to be treatable in early July 2022.

Very shortly afterwards, we were referred to Shipston Home Nursing. One of the coordinators came round to tell us about the options they offer, which were much more comprehensive than we had ever imagined. These cover everything that a terminal patient and their family could need. Importantly, we were then left to call on SHN once we felt the time was right.

Initially there was one visit a day which, bizarrely, soon became something to look forward to. The nurses were always cheerful, quickly became friends and, so importantly, built an excellent relationship with Jenn. The nurses were at all times tender and gentle with her and always unquestioningly respected her wishes. None of us ever felt there was any time pressure during their visits.

When the nurses saw a need for any aids, they mentioned this but did nothing until we asked for what they had suggested.

The time came when, as Jenn got less mobile, the possible need for a second visit each day was mentioned. We thought about this for a very short time and asked for it to happen. The final stage was the need for night sits. Again, just a suggestion, a reminder of what was available: we knew the nurses were right and for the final week a nurse was with us every night. SHN worked closely with Marie Curie to achieve this.

The nurses always took time to ensure that the rest of the family was coping with the situation, to help and to counsel us. If we had questions, they were answered thoughtfully and truthfully. Truly, SHN treats the whole family as their patient.

Quite simply, none of us, not Jenn nor Kate (my daughter), Alan (my son in law), George (my grandson) or I could have coped without SHN. If there was an urgent need, a phone call would lead to someone coming as quickly as possible.

If, in these circumstances, the word “lucky” can be used, then we were very lucky. Jenn’s illness was relatively short, she was never in pain, we are a mutually supportive, closely knit family living within a few minutes of each other but, above all we were lucky in having SHN available. There is no equivalent in most places. We can never thank them enough for the way they eased Jenn’s last few weeks and so made everything so much more bearable for her and the rest of her family.

Jenn died on October 9. But the nurses still came round to see how we were coping.

Thank you so much both SHN and everyone there with whom we came into contact.”

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