In April, Marilyn, 86, from Romsey, was diagnosed with Cancer of the oesophagus for the second time and told she had months to live.

It was crucial to Marilyn that she stayed with her husband, who has advanced Parkinson’s disease, for as long as possible.

“I’m not afraid of death; I’ve had a good, long life. But I couldn’t imagine living without John there with me. I was insistent that we stay together.”

She started receiving daily visits from the Mountbatten care at home team, which gave her the chance to stay with John and receive care in their own home.

“I apologised to the carers all the time at first. I felt guilty for being so stubborn, and it was hard to be dependent on others when we’d been independent for so long.

“I don’t feel like that anymore. They helped me to realise that it’s okay to lean on them.”

In the team’s two daily visits, it’s not just the physical care that makes a difference, but how much they improve her mood and wellbeing.  

“In 86 years, I’ve never met a group of people like them. They’re incredibly special and all mad in their own way, but everyone have the same kindness.”

“One day, I had a food shop delivery coming, but my husband and I couldn’t get downstairs by ourselves and there was nobody else who could be there to answer the door.

“Two of the carers came back for an extra visit, helped me downstairs and waited for the order with me, chatting and making me laugh the whole time. Then they unpacked all my food and put it all away.

“I’ve never laughed so much and never cried so much as I have since knowing them. I cry partly because I’m so grateful.

“Hugs are very common when they visit and they never hurry, even though I know they have lots of other people to care for.

“Come July, I hadn’t yet played my part and died like I was expected to! I was afraid that the carers would stop coming then, but they said no, we’re with you until the end.

“To know that they’ll be there until I die is an enormous relief. They make it so much easier.”

Your support helps to send our incredible care at home team to people like Marilyn every day. Thank you.

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