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"If they hadn’t answered my call on that difficult day, I know that I would not have gone on from strength to strength."
December 01, 2022
Thanks to the generosity from people like you, we were able to extend our Free Bereavement Helpline hours and to open on Christmas Day for the first time, two years ago.
Fiona was Cruse Scotland’s first ever Christmas Day caller, and here she shares her experience, the difference being able to reach out made, and how your donation this Christmas will help others just like her.
My husband, Jim, died three days before Christmas 2020. We only had five weeks from diagnosis to his death from stage four Lung Cancer. With the Covid 19 Pandemic, he spent the first three weeks in hospital where our only communication was a phone call each evening. I was eventually allowed in for what turned out to be the last 10 days of his life.
That first Christmas was a nightmare – it was so close to Jim dying that I spent Christmas Eve sitting in the undertakers.
The months leading up to the next Christmas without Jim were awful. You cannot get away from it in the shops, on the radio or telly. You just want to crawl under a rock to block it all out. Everyone around you seems to be happy or excited that Christmas is coming, and you want to yell at them; ‘NOT EVERYONE IS HAPPY!‘ You just want the day to go as fast as possible.
I do have a very good support network in my friends and family but sometimes you don’t want to burden them with your sadness especially when they are with their loved ones at that time of year. So I looked out my iPad and searched ‘bereavement support’ and found Cruse Scotland. The main difference calling the Helpline made was having that kind supportive voice that listened to my story.
If they hadn’t answered my call on that difficult day, I know that I would not have gone on from strength to strength. The Helpline gave me the security blanket that I needed.
I would like to say to anyone who may be struggling with their grief alone or thinking of reaching out to Cruse Scotland - Please just DO IT! Reaching out on Christmas Day quite literally saved my mental well-being.
I was in the depths of despair and just hearing the kind, supportive voice who was prepared to let me cry, tell her all about my lovely husband and how lost and sad I was, was truly amazing, I was able to go to bed feeling a little lighter and able to face the next day.
Across Scotland, 300,000 children, young people and adults face their first Christmas without a loved one. No one should struggle alone.
A gift of £10 could cover the cost of a one hour call to our National Bereavement Helpline – to support someone just like Fiona this Christmas, and £100 could train a Helpline Volunteer who will go on to support 200 people in a year.
Find out more about the services we offer and the bereavement support that’s right for you.