As told by her mum, Sarah

My beautiful daughter Sinead was diagnosed with bowel cancer in July 2014, at just 22 years old.  Sinead courageously fought a tough battle over the next two years, having several rounds of chemotherapy, radiotherapy, and a major surgery. Unfortunately, the cancer had spread and there was no longer any treatment to help Sinead and she began to come to terms with her terminal diagnosis.

In October 2016 Sinead went to stay at Overgate Hospice to help her learn how to manage her pain. Sinead had always voiced that she didn’t want to go to a hospice as she believed it would “just be like a hospital”. She was very apprehensive but quickly felt at home at Overgate in her own room overlooking the beautiful gardens, with a spare bed for friends and family to stay too – she never spent a night alone! Every single staff member did everything they could to make her feel comfortable, not only in her healthcare but by treating her with respect; she felt SAFE, she felt CARED for and she felt LOVED. Overgate did so many special things for Sinead. They organised a movie night in her room with a projector, allowed her friends to come in for takeaways and we were allowed access to the kitchen to prepare Sunday dinners that we ate together as a family.

Overgate made her feel so normal, and the nurses helped her live those last few months of her life! The staff respected Sinead’s young age, caring very much for her physical wellbeing as well as her mental health, she was after all only 24 years old. She knew this was the right place for her to die.

Sinead died peacefully at Overgate on 22nd January 2017 with her family by her side. It was such a sad day but she had a good life with so many great life experiences.

Overgate was a huge part of Sinead’s story in helping her live her last months. The care and support are indescribable. The staff loved my precious girl so much – Sinead felt so loved at Overgate and for that and so many other reasons, I truly am so grateful. Overgate will always be ‘my little piece of heaven’.

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