Your story: Felicity Treadwell
My name is Felicity Treadwell. My husband Hamish and I are originally from Dannevirke, and we have lived in Palmerston North for 7 years with our three children aged 11, 15 and 17. I work as a real estate agent for Harcourts Palmerston North.
In 2004, my father was diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease (MND), an incurable illness that affects the nerves which impacts the ability to move, speak, swallow and breathe whilst maintaining an active mind. Over time, due to lack of movement, the muscles gradually weaken and waste away.
An eventual diagnosis meant at least Dad had answers, but it was a sad, grim, and frightening future that lay ahead. At the point when the Hospice referral was recommended, Mum and Dad were initially hesitant to discuss palliative care, believing it was acceptance of the beginning of the end.
The reality was that once they engaged the service, they found Arohanui Hospice was a place to enhance quality of life and to provide a raft of services and information which supports both patient and their whānau.
Knowing we had the assistance of the Hospice behind us was an absolute blessing in this extremely difficult time. Arohanui Hospice was a place of calm. The support network made us feel secure, comfortable, and at that point in time in control of an uncontrollable journey. The respite care provided relief as frequent ambulance callouts and hospital visits had become the norm, and life at home was becoming increasingly frightening.
The on-site Hospice accommodation meant my family were able to support Mum and Dad. The offer of accommodation helped to elevate just one small worry for us and provided us with the assurance that we could all be together. The availability of the Chaplin service brought a huge amount of comfort to us, and many private, personal and extremely difficult conversations took place as we headed toward that final transition. My beloved Dad’s journey ended in 2007, after two years of an unbearably tough and brave battle. Our family has called on the Hospice service since, and once again the compassion and support provided was a true comfort.
My experience has left me passionate about supporting the Hospice and the amazing service they provide every day for so many families like mine. It is for this reason that my business partner, Tim Cook and I, chose to donate and help raise awareness for Arohanui Hospice during their national appeal week. We continue our support by offering a $400 donation from those who mention Arohanui Hospice when selling their property, it is a small contribution we can offer to ensure the continuation of this formidable service. We encourage other businesses and individuals to donate even in just some small way.
“We can’t change the outcome, but we can help affect the journey.”
A heartfelt thank you to all of the staff, volunteers, and supporters of Arohanui Hospice, both past and present, my family will forever be grateful for your aroha and support.