Julie, Dave and a labour of love

Shalome Harwood
E.J., Colin, Shalome and sister Faith

Emma (known as E.J.) and Colin Harwood, of Huddersfield, continue their journal of daughter Shalome, who was born with a severe brain abnormality. The couple face immense challenges caring for Shalome – whose name means ‘Peace’ – but they have plenty of help and support…

Julie (Colin’s sister) and Dave have been Shalome’s official carers for the past many months; 34 hours per week and a mere £62 expenses, a labour of love, not a career choice! We are blessed our council have supported this to enable Shalome to have oneto- one care and to support our family in 2016.

You have impacted our lives forever and we are stronger because of your selfless giving

We all felt this change coming to a natural end together; it was our gut instincts and for Julie it was more work plus an MA course. It’s incredible to be on the same page at such a major crossroads for us all, and in Shalome’s life journey.

2017 is going to get eventful! We will certainly miss the input and respite. Yet, as ever, we sense a divine timing in everything. Shalome has upcoming investigations and operations, hospital stays, plus changes to seating/equipment, feet harnesses and splints. We know healthwise she has weakened.

To Julie and Dave: In ‘replacing’ Shalome’s care I’m sure the new package will never match your love. You have impacted our lives forever and we are stronger because of your selfless giving.

As a family, we are exploring a couple of possibilities regarding a new carer. In the meantime, Colin’s mum Janet is volunteering some time on Mondays to help at our house with Shalome. We count our blessings and embrace what’s to come.

Julie and Shalome
Julie and Shalome

A Game Changer

Shalome was fitted for this standing frame today.

Her wheelchair/hoist arrives on Friday. The nursery one is pending so we are hanging on to her other three chairs and table. Trailing other contraptions out in the next few weeks to use when we are out and about.

Her shoes and splints are complete and arriving soon as Shalome has postural issues; hips, feet and curvature in her back. Two operations – gastro valves and peg – are imminent. She’s refusing solids.

We’re slightly overwhelmed by the masses of ‘stuff’ that now swamps our abode, and had a rough few days. It’s always the practical things that are the hardest hurdle.

Excitingly, we stumbled across our new house 14 months after our last move. It will accommodate Shalome downstairs with en-suite, play room and space for equipment fixtures etc, making family life easier.

We’re moving in eight weeks… then applying to DIY SOS!

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