It’s a bittersweet experience working Christmas Day at Trinity Hospice.
That’s according to the nurses on the rota to work on December 25.
For some of the people they will be looking after it will be their last Christmas, so every effort is put into making sure the day is extra special.
But the care, they promise, will be no different to any other day at the hospice.
In-patient staff nurse Michelle McKie said: “Sometimes the patients go out for the day to spend time at home if they can. If they can’t, their families visit and they have Christmas day at Trinity.”
Senior Sister Marie Bonis added: “If a patient really wants to go home for Christmas, we will move heaven and earth to get them there.”
While some of the patients will be at Trinity, on Low Moor Road, Bispham, for pain control, others will be there because they have reached the end of their life. And that’s something the nurses will be well aware of.
Health care assistant Julia Sweet said: “We try to be as upbeat as we can with the patients, but respectful of those who have passed away and their families.”
Michelle adds: “We do dread someone passing away on Christmas Day because for their friends and relatives it’s going to be the anniversary of their loved one.
“Christmas will never be the same again for them.”
For Sister Marie it will be her first Trinity Christmas.
She said: “I used to be a district nurse, and for the people you visit in that role often you are the only person they see on Christmas Day. At Trinity the team will pull out all the stops to make sure it’s a real family atmosphere.”
It also promises to be a fun-filled Christmas.
Michelle said: “We wear bonkers things in here. We’ll be wearing reindeer ears and flashing earrings.
“You’re allowed to be silly on Christmas Day. Even Santa comes around and gives everyone a present.”
Senior staff nurse Sandra Seed adds: “You have to make it memorable because it may well be someone’s last Christmas.” This year, parts of Trinity and Brian House children’s hospice are closed while work continues to transform the building, making it fit for the future thanks to The Gazette’s Hospice Heroes campaign.
Sandra said: “We’re all really looking forward to seeing it when it’s finished.
“This is what the patients want and need, and it’s thanks to the generosity of people from Blackpool, Fylde and Wyre that it’s happening.”