Seasons Hospice: the importance of volunteering

Volunteering is an important aspect in the lives of many and it can be a very rewarding experience. I have always enjoyed volunteering and am constantly looking for different ways to get involved in the community. Another passion of mine is medicine, and I hope to one day be a doctor. Combining these two passions … Continue reading “Seasons Hospice: the importance of volunteering”

An Unexpected Exchange

There was a twinkle in Carly’s eye the moment the four of us walked into the room. It was a cold day in November and it was the first time that I had visited the Princeton Care Center. Although Carly was not a Hospice patient, she always sat in the exact same spot at the exact same … Continue reading “An Unexpected Exchange”

Only a Moment

First off, I should start by saying that I have no experience with death other than at the Forbes Hospice. So my first experience with it came as a realization, a reality check about what it means to end. A winter storm had coated the Pittsburgh area with a large blanket of snow, and the … Continue reading “Only a Moment”

A New Beginning: My Journey Through Hospice

The majority of my teenage years have been spent volunteering in various locations with countless amounts of people, but the Seasons Hospice volunteer program is definitely one of the most meaningful and inspiring volunteer opportunities I have ever experienced. When I was accepted to this program, I knew it was going to change my outlook … Continue reading “A New Beginning: My Journey Through Hospice”

How I was Changed through Hospice

One of my most memorable experiences during the course of this program was interacting with the son and daughter of an elderly woman on the unit. The woman was no longer verbal and was barely responsive to the nursing staff. She was, however, as illustrated by her children, to be very responsive to them and other … Continue reading “How I was Changed through Hospice”

Stories of a Lifetime

I approached my first hospice visit with a hint of apprehension. Up until then, my interactions with the elderly had largely been limited to my grandparents – relatives who had known me since my birth. With hospice patients, I was afraid that the intergenerational gap would be insurmountable – not to mention the inherent difficulties … Continue reading “Stories of a Lifetime”

Accepting Death as An Inevitable

I decided to apply to be a volunteer with Seasons Hospice because my mother was a hospice nurse for many years when I was a child, and I thought that it would give me some insight into the important work she did. What I did not anticipate about my experience as a volunteer was learning … Continue reading “Accepting Death as An Inevitable”

Changing Perspectives on Death and Dying

I am fortunate enough to have never experienced the death or dying of a loved one. In our society, it seems as though death has been neatly removed to a comfortable distance, pushed out of our thoughts and hidden from view under a cloak of feigned invisibility. When death does come, as it inevitably must, … Continue reading “Changing Perspectives on Death and Dying”

My Time at Haverford

During my time as a hospice volunteer, I visited Haverford Hospice to see my patient, Valerie. She is a lovely 80-year-old with a fondness for art and music. However, because she has Alzheimer’s disease, she cannot articulate herself clearly and often expresses herself with grunts and one-syllable words. At first, it took me a while … Continue reading “My Time at Haverford”

Skill and Empathy

When I walked in on the first day, I was ecstatic when the nurses and aides instantly knew that I was a volunteer and were ready to train me. In many of my previous volunteer positions, I showed up the staff had no idea what to do with me. They simply said “go get some” … Continue reading “Skill and Empathy”