Testimonial from Carrie Lazell
I have the highest regard for Marina Allen and her recent care she gave both my elderly parents and the way she went on to care for my whole family during a very distressing episode over the past few months.
We found Marina about 5 months ago, just as my family was descending into a crisis point. My father had been diagnosed with a very aggressive terminal cancer and my mother, who has a mental illness was starting to deteriorate also.
My sister and I are the only siblings, & live a long way from my parents in Tonbridge and needed someone to be able to help in this very difficult situation.
Marina first came to help my mother who was going to be at home alone for considerable lengths of time while my father had an amputation to the leg to try to slow his cancer down.
My mother is a very difficult person to care for. She does not have an ability to engage with people well and is very depressive and has an acute anxiety disorder. My father had always cared for her and was very unwilling to face just how ill she really is, and unable to face the reality that she needed to at this point realistically be in a mental hospital.
Marina was incredible. She is a devoted, naturally caring person with many years of nursing experience and goes above and beyond what is demanded of her. She is respectful, strong and also very perceptive and able to judge perfectly how to handle someone as difficult as my mother. She made her feel safe and reached out to her in a way no one else has managed to do without my father there to care for her.
This alone we were so very grateful for, as the burden of our mother's needs running along parallel to our father's health so quickly diminishing was too much for us to handle. Marina took care of everything for us, including getting medication, doing washing, liaising with doctors and being a friend to our mother who felt so desperately abandoned.
One morning on arriving for her daily visit, Marina found our mother who had fallen and lay unconscious, got her quickly to hospital, helped us get her looked at by psychiatrists and have her sectioned. All of which we just could not have achieved without her help & knowledge of what to do, how to operate under pressure & her decisiveness in adverse conditions.
The next chapter was that then Marina took over the care for our father, who was in and out of hospital for the final couple of months of his life. He had just had his leg removed, was basically disabled, and had lost his wife as a companion ( as she was and is still in a psychiatric unit).
This is where Marina literally shone, and we are forever grateful to have found someone as truly amazing and who completely defines the word 'carer' to us.
She made our father's end of his life wonderful. She was fun to be with, made him laugh, again treated him with such dignity, did everything he needed, be it washing him, shaving, cooking, pouring him a glass of wine! And so much more, so many emergency trips to hospital, calls in the night, needing to liaise with doctors, Macmillan nurses, with allof her knowledge and experience of nursing too this was priceless. For example Marina spotted when he had been left severely dehydrated and other negligences she swiftly picked up on and dealt with, never having to be asked to do so.
Marina is the sort of person with real life experience, real initiative, shows deep care and understanding and I cannot recommend her highly enough.
She is always very hardworking, very punctual, goes above and beyond her level of duty.
For my sister and I and our families, Marina has become a dear family friend. She made my father truly happy right up to the day he died. She also, amidst all of this, continued to visit my mother and to be an emotionalcrutch for us in this very difficult time. Often ferrying us fonrvards & backwards to hospitals and looking after my small children, making sure we had a fridge full. But maybe most of all always giving out a positive, strong and resilient aura that kept us all going and saw us through.
I will never be able to fully thank her enough. I can only write about our experience and how having Marina as our carer was completely perfect.
I completely trust her with everything and I know she would always act in completely the right way in any difficult situation. She has that natural ability to be calm in a storm and is exactly the person anyone would need if they have a crisis they need help with. My father said in one of his last texts to me.
'Bless you for finding Marina' I would really like to say it was incredible luck that we did and I am eternally grateful to her for everything she has and still does for our family.
Very Best Wishes,