When Ann Michel had a stroke In December 2015, the last thing her family could imagine was seeing her well and mobile enough to set sail on a cruise.
Following weeks in rehabilitation and almost a year in permanent care, that’s exactly what she did. After returning to her Newcastle home, Ann and her daughter Jo, headed off on a nine night cruise around the South Pacific to celebrate her recovery from what was a sudden and dramatic life-changing event.
"When we booked the cruise she wasn’t even out of care," said Jo. "I thought I’d do it and see how she improved. One thing about my mother is, she’s a very determined woman."
Improve she did, with her staunch resolve and the support of her family and carers, Ann, who receives three home care visits each week, now uses a walker and has achieved a level of independence that at one stage never seemed possible.
Ann’s determination is a key reason their dream of taking a cruise became a reality. "We managed all right," said Ann. "We watched shows and I did enjoy it. I’d say Noumea was probably my favourite place."
Ann and Jo loved their cruise so much that they, and Ann’s husband, Peter, are now contemplating taking another cruise together later this year.
Jo has recently taken off for two months to work in America with the peace of mind that the Home Care Experts by Calvary will continue to support her mother’s independence.
Find more holiday inspiration with our top tips for planning a cruise.