Looking forward to a family’s first Christmas at home together

I wanted just one thing for Christmas – to have my family together at home. Sadly I didn’t get my wish. But this year, with help from Rainbow Trust Children’s Charity, I’m thrilled to be waking up on Christmas morning with my husband, Danny, and our three children all in our own beds.

Last year, Christmas Day didn’t feel special at all. It was my newborn twins, Charlie and Louis’ first Christmas. But since birth, Charlie had been very sick, and in and out of hospital while doctors tried to diagnose what was wrong. He was too ill to come home for Christmas. On Christmas Eve I left a stocking on the end of his hospital cot and came home. It was awful.

Charlie remained in hospital for five long months, having lots of invasive and upsetting tests, to try and understand why he had trouble feeding and coordinating his movements. In February, he finally came home, having missed out on so many special moments with us. His condition is yet to be diagnosed, but it’s so wonderful to have my family together at last.

“Life would be so much harder without Dawn”.

I knew I’d need as much help as possible. Danny had to keep working so we could pay the bills. Our Community Nurse recommended Rainbow Trust.

Dawn, a Rainbow Trust Family Support Worker, came to meet us to see how she could help us to cope. Now she comes three times a week to help us at home with the boys. She’s like a big sister – I trust her and she doesn’t feel like a visitor at all.

“Before Dawn came, Jacob said, “Mummy, you don’t listen to me anymore”.

When I have to take Charlie to hospital appointments, which are often lengthy or delayed, Dawn cares for Jacob and Louis which means I can give my full attention to the doctors when they are explaining complicated procedures. Dawn’s support is invaluable in the early evenings. Dinner, bath and bed time for all three is usually such a stressful time but having Dawn there to help makes a huge difference.

This Christmas we are all excited about spending the day at home, enjoying precious time together. Rainbow Trust provides support throughout the Christmas period, enabling more families with sick children to be at home at this special time. Family Support Workers, like Dawn, dedicate their own Christmas to giving families like mine the greatest gift of all – time spent together at home.

Rainbow Trust’s help is a lifeline. Please make a donation this Christmas. Having someone else to turn to makes a huge difference to my family. It would be a wonderful present to families like mine if you could make a donation to Rainbow Trust. Please give whatever you feel you can spare and Rainbow Trust will be able to reach more families at Christmas and throughout the year.

Donate online at rainbowtrust.org.uk/christmas-appeal or speak to us to make a donation by calling 01372 220086.