Respite at Winsley – Tanya’s story

I was diagnosed a year ago and my doctor asked me if I'd mind being introduced to Dorothy House and I said 'of course not'. And that is how my wonderful journey started.

I had a friend who attended a hospice in London a few years ago thus I had no worries with attending a hospice.

Ten amazing days at the Inpatient Unit

Without the suggestion from Mary to attend respite to sort my medication and the huge help from Winsley, I would have been unable to complete one of my ambitions, to fly with friends to Cornwall by helicopter, there and back. I felt like a movie star. Happy memories for us all. My husband has also benefitted from the golden touch of Dorothy House; helping him understand my life that includes living and dying.

Dorothy House has supported me in every part of my life. From Mary the Nurse Specialist who visits once a week to Louise the physiotherapist who comes around to do walking with me. It's been brilliant. I had a ten day stay at the Inpatient Unit which was amazing- brought me up to top notch when I didn't realise I was actually down below zero.

The Hospice has improved my day to day life- immeasurably! They're there if I need them and I can call any time. Before Dorothy House I was very lost and confused with things. From my medication to life in general. It was a blessing when they got involved with my medications as I had got into such a terrible mess. My Nurse Specialist was here for a long Friday evening sorting me out; she should have left at 5pm but was here until 7 pm! How she kept her bonnet on I'll never know. I tested her to the max! She never complains. They all make it look effortless and they become very special.

Creating precious memories

I'd recommend them to everyone. The support and respite care I have been given has made this a good journey. They are teaching me how to live but they are also teaching me how to die. It's both sides.

I can talk about dying to Dorothy House and I have adjusted to the idea in my head - which is so important and I'm getting used to what might happen. I really wish people didn't fear the idea of a hospice because they bring nothing but help to live your life to its fullest. Dorothy House is very important to me - and I encourage other people to take the same opportunity.

The more people who understand their work  - helping people to live - the less afraid they'll be.

After I have gone, I would like to be remembered for laughter. I am grateful to everyone at Dorothy House who has helped me continue to laugh and create precious memories.