Kelly’s Story

Read more about one of our Day Hospice patients, Kelly, and her pledge to walk in 2022’s Great East End Walk for St Joseph’s Hospice.

“I have lived in the East End all my life and have a husband and 2 children. In 2015, I was diagnosed with a brain tumour, and I was told that while it could be treated, it couldn’t be cured. For some reason, being told that I was dying at 31 years old didn’t register in my head, so I put it to the back of my mind and just got on with life.”

After her diagnosis, Kelly underwent a year of chemotherapy, and in 2016 she was told that the tumour was in remission. But that small piece of good news was short-lived, and in 2020, further treatment was needed. The tumour had spread around Kelly’s brainstem, this time in smaller pieces. Kelly is now undergoing a new chemotherapy treatment to help try to shrink the new tumours.

“The diagnosis is 2020 is when it all changed for me. I realised that this was real and that I needed to deal with the situation. It made me think about my lifetime goals and dreams, and what I wanted to get from the rest of my life.”

Sometimes I think it’s hard to connect with the emotions involved with my tumour. The fact that I’ll be gone, away from my kids, is almost too much to bear, so I try not to think about it too much. I don’t want the sadness of the situation to distract me from what’s important, which is right now, focused on the time that I do have with my family.”

Since her diagnosis, Kelly has been supported by St Joseph’s Hospice to help make life that little easier for her and her family. Day Hospice, counselling, pain management and respite care have helped Kelly live the best quality of life possible.

Kelly said, “If I couldn’t go to the Day Hospice at St Joseph’s, I don’t know what I would do. Coming here every week has given me a purpose. I love to socialise and meet new people, so it’s nice that people there can relate to what I am going through. Both the staff and patients at St Joseph’s have taught me so much, and I have made some amazing friends.”

To show her appreciation for St Joseph’s Hospice and the support that she has been given, Kelly has decided to take part in this year’s 3-mile family-friendly Great East End Walk.

“I am doing the walk in my wheelchair with all my friends and family so that we can all celebrate my life while I am still here, and it’s something they could continue to do every year when I’m gone.

St Joseph’s has been amazing to me, and I can’t thank them enough. I am doing all I can while I still can to raise money for St Joseph’s so that others in similar situations will continue to receive the Hospice’s amazing care and services.

I like making other people smile and laugh. I want people to remember that a terminal diagnosis doesn’t mean that you instantly stop living. You have to keep going and do all those things you’ve always wanted to do now! Terminal means that from that moment, you get to decide what you want and need to do before you pass. For me, giving up isn’t an option. I feel like I am in the middle of my journey, where there is still so much fun to be had!”

Join Kelly, and sign up for this year’s Great East End Walk Today!

Walk in memory of someone you’ve lost or just in support of St Joseph’s Hospice.