A good night’s sleep is something most people take for granted, but for Jim and Jayne, caring for two daughters with complex conditions means they are regularly woken throughout the night.
Lily-Rose, 18, and Tia, 12, both have complex care and medical needs, and have been coming to Martin House for respite care since May last year.
Jim says: “At night time we have machines which monitor their heart rates and oxygen levels, and if these drop below a certain point, the machines will bleep and we will respond.
“Sometimes it’s a case of just holding their hand and moving them, sometimes it will take some kind of physical intervention, and in the worst case scenario, we have to call an ambulance.
“But the reality of that is these machines are going off maybe three or four times a night, maybe 10, 15, 20 times a night, and we are constantly aware of this noise going on, or the fact we are up and down, so although we may grab half-an-hour’s sleep here and there, we often go through the night not having more than a few minutes’ constant sleep.
“Ultimately that does have an impact on our ability to function as human beings.”
Coming to Martin House isn’t just about getting a good night’s sleep for Jim and Jayne, but the all-round support the hospice provides.
“It’s not always about having that uninterrupted night’s sleep; we can go up to the room at 8pm when the girls are settled, watch television, read a book, just talk, go for a walk in the area, go out for a meal, then go to bed and have a lie-in in the morning, knowing the children are being cared for.
“Until we’d come here for the first time, we didn’t realise how much difference that really makes. We do it because we love our children and it’s not a problem for us, we do manage to function; but when you stop and think about it, it’s probably taking its toll on us.”
“For us, it’s a very happy place, a very welcoming place, you can relax, enjoy time with other people, there’s something here for everybody.”
Your support means that Martin House can be there for families, like Lily-Rose and Tia’s, when they need it most.