Nurses, personal care aides, social workers, and caring volunteers came to our home, where he wanted to die. They provided end-of-life medical care, attention, nurturing, daily help, and pain control – all at no charge to us. They answered Robert’s questions and mine, helped keep him comfortable, gently told me what to expect, and treated him with great respect. They were available day and night, around the clock, anytime we needed them – and we needed them often.
After Robert died, the wonderful Hospice staff and volunteers attended to me, providing individual counseling and group grief support that helped me figure out how to make my life work after such a great loss. I have never met a more compassionate group of people, and most are volunteers giving back because Hospice helped them in their time of need.
Those of you who encounter me in person see me dance and hear me laugh these days – I don’t know how I could have done either without Hospice. Those of you who know me and Robert only through my book and blog have witnessed me poking through the shadowy shutdown of grief to communicate with you here, sometimes sadly, but more often joyfully these days, as I embrace the parts of life that fill me with joy and let me help others.
As I heard another widow say, "When does it [the loss] get better? It doesn't get better. But I get better."
If you can help by making a donation to honor Robert and other loved ones who have benefited from Hospice care, please click here to see my Human Race donations page.