Remembering romance this Valentine’s Day

by Izzy Partridge
Marie Curie Healthcare Assistant - South East

Isobel Partridge

With Valentine’s Day coming up, sometimes I think about people I've cared for in the past and one story really stands out.

A few years ago I cared for an elderly man who lived with his wife. They were one of those lovely old couples who make you want to be like them when you’re that age. They didn't have any children, but had lived a great life together – going on holiday and really living life to the full.

They were still very affectionate, she would sit and hold his hand; they’d have a little kiss and cuddle in his bed together. Sometimes people seem afraid to touch their loved ones when they are ill, like they are too fragile to hug, so it was lovely to see.

One evening we were chatting and he told me his concerns of leaving his wife behind. They had been retired for over 20 years so had spent all this time together. He told me that when he was in the army he used to write her letters, just about the everyday things. If he was going away for a few days, he would leave notes in her dressing gown for her to find after he had gone.

He knew he didn’t have much time left and was very worried about her being lonely, so I said maybe you could write her some notes again. I helped him write the notes and then I left them in her dressing gown and around the house for her to find.

It’s lovely to be able to do things like that for your patients, to really help them make the most of the time they have left.

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