Keeping Well

It’s devastating to be told you have cancer and Mike Smythe, 68 from Walton-on-Thames, had to face this only months after caring for and losing his wife to the same disease.

“I’ve spent the last four and a half years living with cancer, I’ve lost weight, battled depression and completely changed the things I enjoy doing, but I’m glad to say I’m still living,” explained Mike from the comfort of the Sam Beare Day Care Unit. “I really can say I have found a new lease of life after finding this place, and it’s completely changed my outlook. I was getting very depressed at home especially after losing my wife, and during treatments it was particularly hard. But I’ve found that through the activities offered at Sam Beare I have new interests and am adapting my life accordingly. The staff are all incredible and their support is very important to me.”

Mike has enjoyed taking part in a new initiative from the Hospice; a 6 week Wellness programme, introducing patients to day care with a variety of activities to encourage regular attendance. Liz Bennett, Day Care Leader said “The sessions are very informal and cover topics such as relaxation, nutrition, fatigue management and breathlessness, and art and craft. We’ve noticed that although patients are being cared for in their own homes by our Community nurses, there is a real benefit in socialising with others, and trying new things to improve overall wellbeing.”

The programme has been so successful that the Day Care Unit has continued a rolling programme of activities on a Tuesday.

For further information, please call 01932 826081 or send an email here.

Read more about our Day Care Units here.