Tag Archives: hospice

The good shepherd

Pallavi Tatapudy South Kortright, New York, USA   “Mr. Yankees stayed silent, but his eyes all the while were yelling, ‘O, my Good Shepherd, please don’t do this to me. How could I have gotten three strikes so soon? Give me the strength to continue playing in the game of life. I beg you to […]

Ushers of life

Genevieve Kupsky Washington, D.C. USA   Our obligation to our patients continues into the sunset of their lives. The sun sets on the cherry blossoms of Washington, D.C. in springtime. Photographer: Rami Halaseh “You are on holy ground. Time is sacred, and the veil is thin.” The chaplain left the newly-oriented volunteers with these words […]

The book that galvanized a health care transformation

Sherrie Dulworth New York, USA   Dulworth, Sherrie. On Death and Dying Changed the Health Care Conversation. March 22, 2019. Mount Kisco, New York. One of the major health care sea changes of the past half-century did not originate from the usual sources of scientific research, technological development, or even clinical trial-and-error. Instead, a book […]

They would rather go alone

Kera Morris Denver, Colorado, USA   La Solitude du Christ by French artist Alphonse Osbert, 1897. Wikimedia Commons/Public Domain Dad had been in and out of hospice for years. It had not occurred to me that you could go into hospice and come out on your own two feet, but it was apparently the case. When I got […]

Why not let her go gently into that good night?

Victoria Lim Iowa City, Iowa, United States    Old woman dozing (1656) Nicolaes Maes (1634-1693) One early morning I was paged to see an eighty-five-year-old patient in the dialysis unit with low blood pressure. I learned that she had diabetes, hypertension, and diffuse atherosclerosis. In the past decade she had undergone four major surgeries for […]

Poppy power

John Graham-Pole Gainesville, Florida, USA   Dr. Graham-Pole with cancer patient, Bridget. At the time of the photo, Bridget had life-threatening cancer requiring opioids, and is now a successful artist. Author photo. The poppy’s juice . . .brings the sleep to dear Mama — Sara Coleridge, Pretty Lessons in Verse for Good Children   In Xanadu […]

A love story

Kate Rowland Chicago, Illinois, USA   “Is that her partner in there with her?” Ankita, a second-year resident, and I had just finished seeing a new patient, Marian. Marian’s detailed problem list had required an equally detailed visit, and Ankita had addressed her urgent issues: uncontrolled diabetes, cirrhosis, and stage 3 congestive heart failure. As […]

Psychosocial – Hospice House

Jim Gustafson, MDiv       Fort Myers, Florida, USA Poet’s statement: “Hospice House” reflects on a time recently spent in the lobby of our local hospice facility, as I visited with a good friend named Wilma. “Psychosocial” reflects on the most recent events of Wilma’s life as she, who very much hates to fly, flew to visit […]

Where is the dignity in death?

Therese Kwiatkowski Chicago, Illinois, USA   Death in the Sick Chamber, 1895 Edvard Munch, Norwegian (1863-1944) Oil on canvas 150 x 167.5 cm In my experience, the end of life is neither peaceful nor dignified. I wish I had been told that death is hard work for both the patient and the loved one. I did […]

Time

Paul Rousseau Charleston, South Carolina, United States   Photography by Aldaron Selfishly, time is either too short or too long, the moment never appreciated. Mrs. Jones was a 69-year-old female with widely metastatic ovarian cancer, diagnosed during an emergency room visit for abdominal pain. After consultation with an oncologist, she elected to forgo chemotherapy and […]