Blair was diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) in 2015. Gradually his health worsened and the time he spent in hospital increased. In the fall of 2018 he was back in the hospital and was only able to manage a few days at home for the holidays. When he returned to hospital after Christmas he knew he wouldn’t be going home again.
For a man who enjoyed fishing, hiking and generally spending time outdoors this was a difficult adjustment. The hospital conditions were challenging. On a busy ward with thirty other patients, he didn’t always feel safe, especially at night. The hospital noises, coupled with his breathing difficulties from COPD, made sleep a daily battle.
Blair’s doctor had heard about Hospice Halifax and mentioned it when the time came to discuss palliative care. The Hospice had just opened and had a room ready for Blair if he wanted it. His first night in Hospice Blair asked for a sandwich. He was delighted with Aroon, Food Services Coordinator, offered to make him a shepherd’s pie instead. That night he slept soundly for the first time in months. This is Hospice Care.
Following weeks of rain the sun came out again not long after Blair arrived at Hospice Halifax. He sat outside on the patio attached to his room. After six months of not being outdoors, Blair spend the better part of the day bathed in sunshine with his family. He was able to be himself again. This is Hospice Care.
Blair celebrated his birthday while he was a Hospice patient. There were two parties, each with a freshly baked cake, to accommodate all of his family. Family who were able to come and go anytime and stay over in Blair’s room or in one of the guest rooms at the Hospice. This is Hospice Care.
Blair brought in photos from home, pictures from his wedding, and the quilts from his own bed. Even the guitar that usually hung on the wall at home was not on the wall at Hospice. This is Hospice Care.