“I’m not ready to come to the party yet!”

8th October 2022

Connie Stenton, a woman with silver hair, wearing glasses and red top, holding bouquet of red roses

Celia Wilson recalls her positive experience with St Barnabas Hospice who cared for her mother Connie in the Inpatient Unit in Lincoln during the final week of her life.

Constance Veronica Stenton (Connie) was Lincoln born and bred, with a loving and caring nature. Celia remembers her with a “silly sense of humour” and the two enjoyed good laughs, even when Connie was in chronic pain.

Laughing woman with silver hair, glasses and blue - white dress, with two young children making funny faces Connie looked after her husband, Celia’s father, from 1992 until he died in 1995 when he was ill – all the while she was suffering from cancer.

Celia says: “Mum was a very strong lady who always put her family first and loved us unconditionally. When I visited her house, I always went home with cakes, pies and sometimes marmalade that she had made. She enjoyed her beautiful cottage-style garden which was always full of gorgeous flowers and loved sitting out there in the sun with a cup of tea and a Cathrine Cookson book.

“She fought cancer for 25 years and we were devastated when she told us that nothing more could be done for her. I had always had a very close relationship with her, so it hit me really hard. My sister-in-law Pam nursed Mum for some months before she went to the St Barnabas Inpatient Unit, it meant so much to me that she would do that while I was unable to because of work commitments.

“Mum received excellent care from the amazing staff, I remember a nurse gently spoon-feeding Mum with raspberry ripple ice cream, which made Mum smile.

“9th October 1997 is the day she died at the age of 78. There had been a big bumble bee on the bed table that didn’t move at all until Mum took her last breath. Then, the bee flew once around the bed and out of the window. My sister-in-law and I both thought that Dad had come back to collect her. Dad died two years before and in her last few days Mum kept saying “I’m not ready to come to the party yet!”

Woman and man with silver hair, the woman wears glasses and a red top, the man on the right a white shirt. White banner underneath and in blue text "Connie and her husband"

“There was a nurse in the room with us and she was so kind and understanding. The staff always had the time to make us feel comforted in our difficult time, which really helped us.

“It has now been 25 years and I still miss Mum, but I know she was looked after well by caring staff who did their very best to make her comfortable before she joined Dad.”

The St Barnabas Hospice on Nettleham Road in Lincoln is currently closed for refurbishment and is set to reopen for patients in November. Our Inpatient Units in Lincoln and Grantham help around 300 people needing end-of-life care each year, with £37.32 covering the cost of one hour of specialist inpatient care.

If you are able to donate and support the Hospice in its mission to keep delivering dignified, compassionate care to those who need it in your community, please make a donation via our website: https://stbarnabashospice.co.uk/donate/

For every £1 we raise, 74p goes towards delivering and improving the care we provide. The other 26p goes towards generating future income.

Fundraise for us

Support your local Hospice by taking part in one of our pre-organised challenges, or take on your own! You will receive support along every step of the way!

Learn more about Fundraising


Make friends, use your know how, make a difference. We are grateful to the hundreds of people who give their time each week.

Register your interest