Kirsty’s blog: The other reasons to love Acorns (Part 2)
Hear from our family ambassador Kirsty Murray through our regular blog series as she prepares to take on our Great Wall of China Trek! #AcornsChinaTrek
There is an invaluable service Acorns offers that not many people are aware of as it is rarely talked about. This piece may be difficult to read but I really want everyone to know about the “Special Bedrooms” and how important they really are.
When Ella was diagnosed we sadly knew at some point we would have to say goodbye. It is the most surreal and emotionally draining existence knowing that any day could quite easily be the last. Not long after being diagnosed Ella was having a tough time with seizures and that is when we were introduced to Acorns. We were advised it might be a good idea to have a look around in case the time came that we wanted to be transferred there from the hospital for end of life care.
As part of our tour of the Three Counties Hospice we were asked if we wanted to look at the special bedrooms. It took me a few seconds to realise what they meant but it is the most respectful and peaceful area of the hospice. Everything had been thought of, from the fact that the handles are up high so children can’t open the doors to the private reflection garden.
When the time came and Ella passed away we knew immediately we wanted her to go to Acorns. At the worst possible time in our lives it was comforting to know we never had to leave her side. We were able to hold her as we travelled to Acorns. The staff were amazing, they helped us with everything, they dug out a Winnie the Pooh (Ella’s favourite) lullaby CD so the room wasn’t silent. They helped put her pyjamas on and fill her cot with her favourite stuffed toys.
The bedrooms are kept cold just as they would be at a hospital or funeral home so there is a small private seating room just outside so that people can go in for as little or as long as they want. They were happy for all our family to come and go so they could say their goodbyes in a home from home environment.
We were able to stay at Acorns the whole time between her passing and the funeral. It didn’t seem right going home and leaving her there so I was so grateful we had the opportunity to be with her and having the special bedroom meant we could go down and see her whenever we wanted to read a story or say goodnight.
The staff changed her whenever we wanted and put her in her dress for the funeral. Her casket was brought into the bedroom on the morning of her funeral and we were able to put her to rest ourselves with her favourite toy.
I will be forever grateful to Acorns for this service and I couldn’t imagine not having it. It really is the most special gift they could give us and I wish all parents that go through this horrendous journey could have the use of facilities like this but I know they couldn’t provide it without the vital funds they receive.
When you lose a spouse you become a widow, when you lose your parents you become a orphan but there is no word for when you lose your child as it should never happen but having Acorns made it that tiny bit easier to deal with.