Sammy is My Whole Entire Life, She Always Has Been
Sammy is my whole entire life, she always has been. She’s my best friend and I’d do anything to protect her.
Children’s Hospice Association Scotland have given us the opportunity to spend great quality time together doing fun things that “normal sisters” do, in an environment that can help with the medical side of things. Being twins makes things harder as I start doing things in life that Sammy should be taking part in too. It’s crazy how many times we’ve been told that there’s no chance that Sammy would get through whatever bad situation she was in. Countless times, she’s been on life support and the doctors have told us to say goodbye. But we have never given up on Sammy and she’s never given up on us. Physically, Sammy shouldn’t have been able to overcome all the illness and pain but we believe that mentally, she’s always pulled herself through for her family. There’s no one in the world that’s stronger than her.
Before we went to Rachel House, I never really knew what a visit there entailed. I believed that a hospice was an extremely sad environment. I never knew it would be so bright, so colourful, fun, and full of happiness and love. Every minute there’s a different activity to be doing and everyone can take part.
Having the nurses come to our home to help with Sammy is probably one of the greatest helps. Having Muriel and Val come round and be able to look after Sammy and do fun activities is a great break for her. She loves to be constantly on the move and doing something fun. It’s also an amazing opportunity for our mum to be able to go out with her friends and enjoy herself for once, playing bingo or badminton. Having the nurses look after Sammy at home means our mum can have peace of mind for a few hours, instead of constantly worrying about Sammy’s care, of being there for doing her medicines, changing tubes, moving and handling, and keeping Sammy occupied.
For me it’s wonderful too because nothing is ever an issue with the nurses. Sammy loves making things, gluing, glittering, sticking and painting. She gets terribly bored easily, but these ladies always know how to keep her occupied. They’re now known as the “bag ladies” as they always bring a massive bag full of games, arts and crafts to keep Sammy happy. They are more like Sammy’s friends than people who come to look after her. They are always laughing and joking with each other. For me, it’s special that they have this bond with her, instead of just being that carer who has to inject something, empty a bag, change a machine – they know Sammy so well.
I can’t thank CHAS at Home and everyone involved enough for what they have given to my family. We all know how precious time is on this earth and the greatest gift we have is Sammy. They have done so much for us to either spend quality time together.
CHAS at Home is celebrating its fifth birthday this year. For five years, our dedicated team of nurses have helped more than 80 families across Aberdeen and the north east with specialist nursing care in the comfort of their own homes.