Grief and the Holidays…………….

Christmas candles

Eid, Chanukah, Christmas, and New Year – it has been imprinted on our psyche from a young age that we spend special holidays with family. This has been a year like no other and many of us will be unable to be with our loved ones, either because a loved one has died or Covid restrictions prevent us from meeting up. We will miss our loved ones even more than usual. Our sense of loss is magnified – the sadness deepens and the sense of loneliness can feel isolating. How can we celebrate togetherness when those we hold so dearly Continue Reading …

Coping with Cancer and Covid……

This year has challenged us all. But for Sarah Hughes it’s been particularly hard. Here, she talks about living with cancer – and letting in the light in the darkest of times. ”The strangest thing about having an incurable illness during a time of pandemic is the weird but unavoidable sense that everyone has finally caught up with you. As people started talking about how worried they were, how they couldn’t stop thinking about the virus, how difficult life now seemed, how isolated, the temptation to say: “Hey guys, welcome to my world” was overwhelming. The thing about living with Continue Reading …

National Bereavement Partnership Helpline (Covid 19 hub)……….

National Bereavement helpline logo 1

Telephone: 0800 448 0800   We are in unprecedented times as a result of COVID-19. It is a worrying and anxious time for many people. This is particularly the case for those whose loved ones have died, or are ill or dying in hospital or other care settings, and for key workers and NHS staff who continue to work and provide essential services. The National Bereavement Partnership have launched a helpline for all individuals who need to speak to someone in these very uncertain and emotional times. Call the free helpline: 0800 448 0800 helpline@nationalbereavementpartnership.org Rt Hon Matt Hancock MP – Secretary of State for Health and Social Care comments on National Bereavement Continue Reading …

Impact of Covid 19 on Urgent Care and GP appointments…..

The NHS is launching a new campaign to make sure people continue to seek urgent care during a medical emergency, (such as suspected heart attacks and strokes), after visits to A&E dropped by 50% this month. These figures are due to an understandable fear of catching Coronavirus, but also for some not wanting to be a burden to an already over-stretched service. But lives are being lost because of this. Figures are also coming to light of fewer cancers being diagnosed. This might be down to the same reasons, but also a reluctance to visit the GP with symptoms that Continue Reading …

Coronavirus…..

Information about the virus A coronavirus is a type of virus. As a group, coronaviruses are common across the world. Typical symptoms of coronavirus include fever and a cough that may progress to a severe pneumonia causing shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. Generally, coronavirus can cause more severe symptoms in people with weakened immune systems, older people, and those with long-term conditions like cancer, diabetes and chronic lung disease. For people going through cancer, or those caring for someone who is, use the 111 online coronavirus service for more information, or contact your consultant or specialist nurse. General advice Everyone Continue Reading …

Cancer Care Survey…….

As part of an NHS survey, more than 70,000 people who have undergone cancer treatment in England have been asked about their care. Although the NHS said cancer survival rates, and patient satisfaction with cancer care, were at a record high, a quarter of people said they did not have the possible side effects explained prior to the start of treatment. And more than a third (39%) said the longer-term side-effects of treatment were not fully explained – Macmillan Cancer Support said that equated to about 120,000 people a year. There’s no doubt about it, cancer is one of the Continue Reading …

As summer draws to a close…..

It is that time of year again – shorter days, a nip in the air, and a sense of how quickly time passes as we glide into autumn. Below is another piece by one of our clients who attended our Writing For Fun course THE SENSES OF AUTUMN I can smell musty dead leaves and the scent of scattered showers, slowly subsiding. I can taste the cup of OXO to keep out the cold and the taste of freedom. I can see the pale autumn sun playing hide and seek in the lifeless, leafless trees. I can hear a dog Continue Reading …

Thoughts from a Doctor…..

Excerpts by Dr Anthony Perre, Cancer Treatment Centers of America (CTCA) PART 1 “As a Doctor, I Thought I Knew Cancer Inside and Out. Then I Found I had it”. ‘Now that I’ve been through cancer, my life seems to be full of clichés. What doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger. There’s no time like the present. And especially pertinent for me, never judge another until you walk a mile in their shoes. I know now that these aren’t just clever sayings – they’re wonderfully true and full of life lessons. At the age of 38, I was diagnosed with Continue Reading …

More excerpts from the Writing for Fun course……

“I arrive at the Centre. What will I find? My daughter needs support so I have come to discuss it. I don’t think I need help for myself but am nervous and sad and frustrated that my illness is affecting my family. I walk in – a friendly foyer with – always a great sign – a book case! The colours are relaxing; the large lounge with deep blue chairs seems to invite me in. I feel at home immediately. “Would you like a drink?” Nothing is too much trouble. I feel supported here – people understand. After finding out Continue Reading …

A Client’s Story….

A client’s story………… The phone rang, and it was Jayne from The Macmillan Wellbeing Centre, offering me a place on the ‘Writing for Fun’ course. I always feel quite anxious and nervous when I start something new as I feel I don’t cope well in unknown social situations and have a lack of confidence. Following the first session and being given tasks for homework (including ‘free-writing on anything that came into my head), I found myself looking forward to the following week. The group was small and we had one connecting factor. I feel the course has helped me onto Continue Reading …