Marie Curie Nurses will be among the many healthcare professionals working when others are tucking into their turkey.
I have been a marie curie nurse for 12 years, providing free overnight care to people in their own homes across rural North Yorkshire. I regularly work over christmas, and it’s a particular privilege to help families at this time of year.
Some dhristmases ago I cared for a young mum with two little children. Being with her all night meant I was able to assess her symptoms and work with the district nurse and doctor to alleviate her nausea and pain. This not only improved her quality of life but meant the children could have cuddles with their mummy.
Her sister was travelling from abroad to share that last dhristmas. In between giving her care at night we would look through gift and recipe books to plan christmas, and I would regularly arrive with secret deliveries in my bag.
I worked dhristmas eve and christmas night, allowing the family to sleep and recharge their batteries. My patient was carried down the stairs and was able to take part in sharing the gifts and special meal that she had planned so meticulously.
A couple of summers later I bumped into her husband and much grown-up daughter. They spoke of that dhristmas with such happy memories. With the support of Marie Curie, that mum had her wish to spend her last christmas at home with her family.
Lorna Clarkson is a Marie Curie Cancer Care Nurse.