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Roy Thomas

I am a 76 year old man with stage 4 terminal cancer. I am currently in Residential Hospice of Grey Bruce’s Chapman House.

When I was brought here, I assumed that everything that could be done had been done so all I was here for was to die; that was wrong.
I was put here to spend whatever time I have left making my passing comfortable.

At first, I was lazy just lying in bed and accepting my fate.

I began to realize that this hospice was not a place where you are a number and treated like an assembly line component. This has the most caring and compassionate nurses I have ever known.

You are like family to them; nothing is too much trouble, and your comfort and care are paramount to their goals.
I am astounded that they give you their time. The food from the Chefs is tasty, nourishing and they are flexible to your tastes. I would say that you have here food as varied and fresh as any good restaurant in our area.

While here I have had a couple of times when I thought that my time was here; that was also wrong. I had not bargained for me telling the nurse to call home I’m dying, to which she replied, no you aren’t, she slowly calmed me down and sat with me for 30 minutes holding my hand to give me the confidence to trust what she knew better than I did. I will be forever grateful for those 30 minutes of compassion. In many other hospitals, I would have been given some medication and left to sleep it off. That difference alone is what separates hospitals from a hospice like this one. Hospitals don’t have the staff or nurses to accommodate that kind of caring. The nurses here recognize that this is a vocation, not a job, it takes dedication, understanding, and most of all compassion to be a hospice nurse. There is no training that can make a nurse have feelings for all their patients, but they put you first over everything that might be standard.

I have now decided that with the help of these wonderful people I am here to live, and they are willingly helping me to get some strength back and maybe even allow me to help them and myself if I can.

The Palliative doctors are concerned and reassuring in their knowledge. They make sure that you understand what is being done and why. Their visits are maintained throughout your entire stay, and they gladly answer questions both to you and your family, which is very reassuring.

With everything I have said here, I would be remiss if I didn’t also mention that during all the bed baths, colostomy issues and the catheter drains we find time to laugh and joke, it’s not all serious doom and gloom, we try to make light of silly things like kids would do, which lightens the load on the nurses and the patient.
I wish that everyone could have had the opportunity to experience in passing that I have had.

There will never be any way I can repay these people and this very special facility for all the love and care they give.

To anyone who has had any relatives or friends who have been here, there is nothing I’m saying that is new, but if not, I urge people to seriously consider any donation you may make to this exceptional family hospice and its dedicated staff.

There aren’t many of these facilities because they are run on small government grants with the bulk of their funds coming from donations. Without those donations, they wouldn’t exist and that would be a very sad situation.

God Bless and thank you to anyone who does donate. I can assure you that your money will be well spent and is going to a worthy cause.

Respectfully and sincerely,
Roy Thomas
Resident of Chapman House