AT first it was a place of sadness for Linda Clemens, but now Daffodil Cottage has become her haven, her safe place.
She was diagnosed with breast cancer in August 2014 and, back then, she had never heard of the cottage or its myriad of specialists and services.
“I was advised by the specialist to come here and seek assistance and just speak to the nurses and Marita [Tipene] the breast care nurse about what steps to take and what the facility was all about,” she said.
Walking into Daffodil Cottage can be daunting.
“Initially I found it a place of sadness because you’re not sure what to expect and straight away when you get the diagnosis you think okay, you’re in for the fight of your life,” Ms Clemens said.
“Then, as time went on, I found it my safe place.
“All the nurses and all the doctors and everybody have just been beautiful throughout the whole process.
“Everyone’s really positive and always helpful. They’re just amazing.”
Ms Clemens said when her treatment stopped she felt a little lost and it took her a little while to adapt.
“You come in and you get used to seeing everybody. It’s just a little community within itself; it’s great,” she said.
Ms Clemens commended Daffodil Cottage – its specialists, staff and volunteers – who work so hard to ensure that patients do not have to travel to Sydney for treatment.
During her time as a client of the cottage she underwent a number of services.
“There’s a lymphatic drainage massage therapist here as well and she’s beautiful and I’ve used that facility and I’ve also used the wig library, the counselling service available and then I see the oncologist here as well,” Ms Clemens said.
Then as time went on I found it my safe place.Breast cancer survivor Linda Clemens
“Everything’s here that we need.”
Ms Clemens said there was no reason to feel shy or scared about coming along to Daffodil Cottage.
“They’ll be quite surprised at the help and the assistance that they would actually get and everyone’s really understanding and are caring,” she said.
“Everybody’s situation is different and they’re always willing to help no matter what.
“They always go above and beyond. They’ve just got beautiful, caring natures.”
Since her diagnosis, Ms Clemens has seen the cottage’s services expand and has also assisted in getting the breast care support group up and running and has also been involved in the annual Relay for Life.
Daffodil Cottage’s specialists
THE hardest part might be walking through the door but once inside, acting nursing unit manager Belinda Maynell says there is a world of support.
Daffodil Cottage has been in operation since 1997 as a place of support and treatment from a wide range of specialists for people undergoing treatment for cancer.
The facility allows people to receive counselling, chemotherapy, supportive care and palliative care.
Daffodil Cottage is staffed by specialists in a wide range of areas, while a dedicated group of volunteers offer patients and carers refreshments, company and conversation.
Daffodil Day series
- Week #1 – Daffodil Cottage Wig Library’s here to help
- Week #1 – Daffodil Cottage Wig Library: A patient’s experience
- Week #2 – Radiation Bus is a lot more than just transport
- Week #2 – Volunteer driver’s helping hand for patients in need
- Week #3 – Breast care nurse leads support for patients
- Week #3 – Men, it’s time to take responsibility for your health: Prostate cancer group