Mary’s story

Mary's story

Mary met and married Bob, who had just left the navy, in 1963. They lived abroad in both South Africa and Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) and had four daughters. Eventually Mary and Bob returned to the UK and settled in this area. Bob sadly developed dementia and Mary cared for him for a number of years before she needed support from the integrated health and wellbeing team so he could remain at home.

Mary talked to her GP during a home visit. The GP understood how demanding it can be, caring for a very unwell husband, and referred Mary to the Wellbeing Programme. Bob passed away after his health deteriorated in 2017.

Mary’s Wellbeing Co-ordinator, Jill spent time talking with Mary about how she felt and offered support to help her come to terms with what had happened. At the right time for Mary, they discussed what was important to her to make the most of her life. What was important to Mary was to get out and meet new people and learn new things. As a result Jill introduced Mary to a lady in a similar position, to ‘chair yoga,’ and then more recently to a course run by Volunteering in Health called HOPE (“Help to Overcome Problems Effectively”). Mary has met a lot of new people as a result and has made friends. Mary now has the goal to volunteer and give time back to others.

Mary says: “Wellbeing South Devon has helped me connect with the things I enjoy and to be hopeful about my life after a fantastic 54 years with Bob. I look forward to meeting with friends. I’m now looking into volunteering and doing an IT course at the local library so I can get online.

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