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Journeys in hospice

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The staff and volunteers of Merrimack Valley hospice are honored to care for and get to know hundreds of patients throughout our region.  Daily we witness how hospice care enriches people’s lives, allowing them to spend cherished time with family and friends.  In the coming months, we will use this blog to tell you about some of these special individuals – their personal stories, adventures, and the meaningful connections of their unique journeys.

After a 2 year battle with cancer, David was determined to have quality time with his wife and three young children in the home he loved.  David and his wife had scrimped and saved for 5 years to buy their dream home, and he was determined to stay there as long as possible.

Before his illness, David and his family spent several summers in a little cabin they rented on the coast of Maine. He loved swimming in the ocean and picnics on their small sandy beach. And, he delighted in watching his children run and play along the shoreline. 

A patient of Merrimack Valley Hospice for more than 4 months, David’s symptoms were mostly under control until this past summer, when his abdominal pain became too severe to manage.    He had difficulty sleeping and play time with his children…..time he cherished, became too painful.

David’s life changed when his hospice nurse referred him to Merrimack Valley Hospice House for pain and symptom management.  David spent a few days at the House, where the palliative care team managed his pain to make him more comfortable, help him sleep and regain his appetite.  His doctor, nurses and social worker spent time talking with him, answering questions about how to manage his illness at home and how to remain physically and emotionally strong as his illness progressed. 

David returned to the home he loved feeling stronger and more in control of his cancer.  Play time with his children resumed and he was able to participate in family activities including a summer outing to the beach.   

To learn more about Merrimack Valley Hospice House visit  http://www.homehealthfoundation.org/mvhh

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