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Speptember 26, 2012
On September 25, LHSC and St. Joseph’s hosted a book launch for JUST STAY...A Couple’s Last Journey Together. The book is a story about accepting a life altering terminal diagnosis and maximizing the amount of time a couple has left.
When Rob Fazakerley, a physiotherapist at St. Joseph’s Health Care London’s (St. Joseph’s) Parkwood Hospital received a terminal diagnosis for metastatic cancer of the pancreas at London Health Sciences Centre’s (LHSC) London Regional Cancer Program he and his wife Jennifer accepted the reality of his diagnosis and focused on living each day to the fullest.
“Rob demonstrated an attitude and way of living with a terminal diagnosis of cancer that was unique. His acceptance of the diagnosis and focus on those he loved was beautiful,” says Jennifer.
The story is chronicled through emails Jennifer sent to the couple’s support system titled “Rob’s Updates.” The book is co-written by Helen Butlin-Battler, chaplain, LHSC and Grace Bradish, nurse practitioner, South West Community Care Access Centre, who supported Jennifer and Rob from diagnosis through the grieving process.
“The book captures Jennifer and Rob’s personal story of receiving a terminal diagnosis and creating a legacy of love and hope with those you love,” says Butlin-Battler who specializes in providing non-denominational spiritual care services to oncology patients at London Regional Cancer Program.
Bradish provided symptom management support to Rob and exchanged approximately 300 emails with Jennifer. She sent back her correspondence to Jennifer to help with her bereavement process. “Buried in those emails was great emotion and self-reflection that is helping Jennifer to heal, and will help others take a different perspective of hope and finding joy and pleasure in the present moment.”
The authors read passages from the book and signed copies for attendees. The book can be purchased at http://www.juststay.ca/.
From left, Grace Bradish, nurse practitioner, South West Community Care Access Centre, Jennifer Fazakerley and Helen Butlin-Battler, chaplain, LHSC sign copies of their book JUST STAY...A Couple’s Last Journey Together at its official launch.