Category Archives: end of life care

A RIVER STORY

When I open my eyes, I see the river flowing out to the sea, as it continues to do, day after day, regardless of what else the day brings with the sunrise. It brings a sense of permanence that steadies … Continue reading

Posted in end of life care | Tagged , | 1 Comment

WE ARE LINKED

“Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect.” Chief Seattle An eventful beginning to a … Continue reading

Posted in end of life care | Tagged | 1 Comment

AULD LANG SYNE

Tradition says that a new year brings with it new hope and new goals. Some of us even write these down, placing a slip of paper carefully in a carved wooden box to bring out next year, the talisman of … Continue reading

Posted in end of life care, hospice | Leave a comment

DUNGEONS AND KNOWLEDGE

While visiting with my English host, who teaches religious studies at an all-girls school in the UK, we bemoaned the truth together as we had both experienced it: that sharing one’s knowledge and actually teaching another person is not the … Continue reading

Posted in end of life care | Tagged | 3 Comments

WE’RE NOT THAT KIND OF FAMILY

November is national hospice month…an opportunity to honor all the patients, families and cohorts throughout the years. Over the years, I have been truly privileged to work with amazing families, of all kinds, as they walked through the loss of … Continue reading

Posted in end of life care, family of the dying | 5 Comments

THE LAST DOSE

It’s been nearly 30 years since the evening as a fairly new nurse I had been assigned to the oncology floor. I still remember my patient (a young woman in her mid thirties with advanced ovarian cancer) the mother of … Continue reading

Posted in end of life care, family of the dying, hospice, hospice story | 3 Comments

DEATH, NATURALLY

  I meet my patient, and think to myself, death by a thousand cuts.  Incremental loss of mobility, independence, then slowly parts and pieces of his body, appendages removed, organs no longer functioning and blood vessels filled with sludge.  I … Continue reading

Posted in end of life care, the conversation | Tagged , | 3 Comments

PLAY YOUR MUSIC

While sitting quietly, I listened while he talked about years that have “flown” by, and the changes that life had wrought, not just in the physical body, but the faded career, the fractured relationships, the plans that were collected in … Continue reading

Posted in end of life care, hospice | Leave a comment

MAKE A WISH

I met a woman recently who works for the “Make a wish” program, and we shared stories about granting wishes.  She made an emphatic statement, “I’m so glad most of my clients have ‘a life limiting illness’ but aren’t necessarily … Continue reading

Posted in end of life care, hospice, Wishes | Tagged | Leave a comment

AN ODE TO MY MOTHER

Some of my family still mention, when reminiscing about my mother, that she was “out of touch” with reality.  My mom had a mental breakdown in her early thirties, (during the 50’s when a lot of women lived in a … Continue reading

Posted in daughter, end of life care, family of the dying, wisdom | Tagged , , | 2 Comments