"The care of my wife who had terminal cancer"
About: Busselton Health Campus / South West Regional Palliative Care Service – Coastal Busselton Health Campus South West Regional Palliative Care Service – Coastal Busselton 6280 Margaret River Hospital Margaret River Hospital Margaret River 6285
Posted by polarisdc46 (as ),
My wife was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer late last year and having gone through a programme of chemotherapy and alternative medical therapies, was able to reduce tumors in the breast and liver. It was early this year when scans showed tumors in the brain, and while my wife started medication again, it was not long until she and I realised that treatment was not helping.
My wife made the decision to stay with my parents in Cowaramup, and so our two children, her parents (from Germany) and I joined her. As her condition deteriorated, she was treated by my parents' family doctor, Mr Bob. He got us in contact with Kim, the regional palliative care nurse, who was extremely helpful. My wife's wish was to stay in my parents' house up to when she passed away, and Kim was only too pleased to accommodate this wish. Kim had many chats with me about medications for pain relief and gave me knowledge and skills to administer pain relief during the evenings' when it was needed.
Supporting Kim, Bob and myself were a team of energetic, enthusiastic nurses. Led by chief nurse from Margaret River Hospital Sandy, there was a coordinated group of nurses including Marina, Hanna and Jinny who were only too happy to visit, whether it was to change the subcutaneous pump medication or to just touch base to see how things were going. Their care and concern, their professionalism and sense of humour, and their desire for my wife to end her days with dignity was palpable and made the final weeks of my wife's life as comfortable for all of us as possible.
While it was only two weeks, all these health care staff became more than just staff...more like caring friends. Such a distressing time for us, including our teenage children, was made so much more comfortable with their involvement. Kim's regular call-ins, often on her days off, and her phone calls and texts to me to see how things were going, were so important to me so I could support my wife as well as our children and their grandparents. I am so glad I had these lovely people along for my wife's journey.