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25 Oct 2019 Personal Stories

Angie shares special moment with her daughter

Angie Cousins recently spent time being cared for on Kirkwood’s In-Patient Unit after being diagnosed with an aggressive form of lung cancer. With the help of the Kirkwood team, Angie was able to share a special moment with her family, as her daughter, Laura, and partner Elijah celebrated their commitment to each other.

Angie Cousins, who lives in Batley, was admitted to Kirkwood’s In-Patient Unit five weeks ago after being diagnosed with Small Cell Lung Cancer – a very aggressive form of cancer – just a week earlier.

After initially being admitted to Pinderfields Hospital with what Angie thought were panic attacks, testing quickly found fluid on her lungs, leading to a quick diagnosis of lung cancer.

Angie’s daughter, Laura, said: “Mum’s health went really downhill so a nurse at Pinderfields suggested moving her to a hospice. I’d never heard of a hospice before, I wasn’t exactly sure what it was.

“When Mum was admitted to Kirkwood, we thought we were at the end of the road. She was really poorly. After being seen by the doctors and getting her medication under control, she had a boost of life only a few days later!

 

“Mum has been doing so well, we hope she can be discharged soon to continue her care at home. But she has asked us all to ensure that when it comes to the end of her life, she wanted to be at Kirkwood. She said that Kirkwood has been like a security blanket. She feels safe.

“We’ve made friends here at Kirkwood. Mum made really good friends with a lady called Margaret, and now that she’s being cared for at home they call each other every day for a chat. It’s so lovely.

“For us now as a family, it’s about quality time. We know Mum won’t get better. There isn’t a cure, but Kirkwood helps us to spend time together.

“My partner and I have been thinking about getting married for a while now. Although it may be a few years before we do tie the knot, I wanted my mum to see us have a blessing. I spoke to the nurses and the Family Care Team about having a ceremony at Kirkwood so my mum could be there.

“I was blown away by the support from all the staff, everyone works together to help you.”

On Friday 18th October, Laura and Elijah, along with close family and friends, all gathered at Kirkwood for the special blessing. Laura, dressed in an elegant white dress, was joined by her son and daughter, who were also dressed for the occasion.

 

The ceremony was held in the Family Care Team Centre and was led by Kirkwood’s Spiritual Care Co-ordinator, Jonathan Sharp. After the blessing, family and friends spent time together enjoying a buffet. Angie was also joined by other Kirkwood patients, who were delighted to be part of the family’s special day.

Laura said: “It gave my mum something to look forward to. Another milestone she didn’t think she would see. If it wasn’t for Kirkwood, we wouldn’t have this time together.

“Kirkwood has had a big impact on our lives. Nothing is ever too much trouble, even when it’s busy. The nurses have always got time for every person’s needs.”

Since the Kirkwood blessing, Angie has been discharged to be cared for at home.

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