Lucy's Last Christmas: Demelza Christmas Appeal
Lucy loved Christmas. She enjoyed putting up the tree, singing carols and putting the carrot out for the reindeer.
Lucy loved Christmas. She enjoyed putting up the tree, singing carols and putting the carrot out for the reindeer. It was a special time that lifted her spirits, no matter how poorly she was feeling.
Her last Christmas was spent at Demelza Hospice Care for Children and it was
completely magical thanks to all the wonderful staff at the hospice. The memory of that special day has given me great comfort since Lucy died and I wish to share it with you in the hope you may like to give a small gift to help other families like ours
– both at Christmas and the whole year through.
Our little Lucy died in March 2014, just a few weeks after her sixth birthday.
She had spent much of her short life dependent on oxygen and in a wheelchair after being diagnosed with lung disease at nine months old. For myself and her big sister Emily, it was a struggle to watch Lucy go through so much at such a young age, but it didn’t stop her from smiling – she was always so happy.
Lucy was at her happiest was when she was at Demelza.
She loved staying at the charity’s hospice in Eltham, South East London and would enjoy trips out and lots of fun activities, while I got much-needed rest.
At the beginning of December 2013 I was told nothing else could be done for Lucy and there was a high chance she wouldn’t make it to Christmas.
When the devastating time came to withdraw Lucy’s treatment, we all knew there was only one place she would want to be. Demelza took us in and set about making the time we had left as special as possible.
Staff arranged for Santa to visit Lucy and they gave us a Christmas tree to decorate together. The three of us would lie under the twinkling lights at night, snuggling closely and creating precious memories.
On Christmas Day, we enjoyed a delicious Christmas dinner together, with crackers and hats, while the care team happily dined beside us. It’s amazing to think they left their own families on such an important day of the year to look after ours.
Christmas at Demelza gave us all the lift we needed and Lucy’s energy surprised us
all. We were blessed to have her in our lives until the March the following year, the entire time, staying at Demelza. The care we received during those rollercoaster months was wonderful and even after she died, Demelza continued to look after our family. She lay in the Butterfly Suite* until her funeral, where we were given the time and privacy to say our final goodbyes.
I wouldn’t be here today if it wasn’t for Demelza.
Our lives will never be the same again but I’m so thankful for the care we received as a family at such a horrendous time. I can still relive every aspect of that very special Christmas Day we spent at the hospice; it’s stayed with me through all of the heartache because it was so magical. Christmas without Lucy is very difficult, but Emily and I hold on to those precious memories to get us through. We decorate the tree with decorations made by Lucy at Demelza including a very special one for the top – our little angel watching over us.
Lynn, Lucy’s Mum
*When a child dies , they can be laid to rest in our bereavement suite (Butterfly Suite or Hop Garden), a special room, enabling the family to stay close until the funeral.
Please donate below to help us create more special moments for our children and families.