End of life is always very difficult; it can stir up lots of emotions within us and, ultimately, it is those that are left behind that it’s hardest for. It can be hard to let go, and we never get over losing someone close – we just learn how to live without them.
My lovely lady Clare had decided that it was time for her to go. Although I was upset and didn’t want to lose her, I knew that this was for my own reasons. Clare was ready to leave and had been for a while. All I could do was make her journey as peaceful and comfortable as possible.
The doctor had been and agreed that Clare’s time was nearing its end. As she had no close family, I arranged with Plan with Care to visit every day until the end, providing that extra comfort when it was needed the most. I stayed with Clare for as long as I could, gently holding her hand while she closed her eyes, and softly speaking to her when she was more awake. She looked so peaceful and calm, and the atmosphere in her room was serene.
I decided to bring in some beautiful yellow roses, as these were her favourite flowers. I arranged them close to her bed, hoping that, even if she couldn’t see them, she might be able to smell their sweet scent.
Clare had a variety of plush toys that she loved. We would often discuss them as if they were friends, so I arranged them close by and in view. One of them was a robotic cat that had been purchased by Alise, her Wellbeing Consultant. Clare loved this cat and would have it sitting beside her and it would purr while she stroked its fur. It would occasionally meow and wash itself, and Clare would coo and chuckle. She had named him Tom and I believe he gave her great company and comfort, so I made sure that he was there too.
I read poems such as ‘Daffodils’ by William Wordsworth and sang all her favourite songs, such as ‘Daisy, Daisy’. In the past, I had written down all the names of her family members and friends – anyone she had ever mentioned – and I named them all, telling her how much she was loved and that her parents were waiting for her and that it was ok to go and be together once again.
The next day, as I was getting ready to visit again, I heard that Clare had passed away. I shed tears for her passing, feeling sad that I would not be visiting this lovely, feisty, sweet lady again. I felt honoured to have shared those last days with her, and I hope that I gave her a beautiful ending that we would all wish for.