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Thursday, 9 June 2016

Thank you Chris and Jayne

Someone asked me a few weeks back ‘what did I learn when caring for my mum who had dementia?’ I think the most important lesson my mum tried to teach me all my life  was that people are amazing and kind . 

Being kind is a gift we can all share, growing up you don’t always listen. I wish I had listened more, all of those years ago.

My mum living with dementia certainly helped me understand more about the kindness of people. I’ve been very lucky to meet incredible people every day through our project, talks, and travel-often leaving me thinking ‘I am so glad to have met you today.’

Two of those people are Chris and Jayne- we first met a few years back at a NHS EXPO Conference. We got chatting about my talks and life and Chris mentioned his diagnosis,

 

Chris and Jayne.jpg

 

I knew that day I had met two people who would be in my heart forever. Since then we have met many times at events,  and every time I hear them speak I travel home feeling glad to have met them again and to have listened.

Chris and Jayne do not just raise awareness about dementia and caring, they help you reflect on and understand more about yourself and life.
 
I won’t try and tell Chris and Jayne’s story.  It is a story that is best and most beautifully told by them themselves, as I'm sure anyone who saw last week's powerful Panorama documentary 'Living with Dementia: Chris's Story' will agree.
 
The focus of Carers Week this year is on building communities which support carers to look after their loved ones well, while recognising that they are people with needs of their own.  Learning from first hand experience is such an important part of this.  I know that I learned so much from my Mum and I think we can all learn a huge amount from stories like those of Chris and Jayne.
 
Thank you Mum for introducing me to remarkable people like Chris and Jayne and thank you Chris and Jayne for introducing and sharing your life story to the world.
 

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