Lessons from Hospice Care

One patient I visited was named Sarah, and she liked to talk with her hands. She was usually in the dining room, so I would kneel next to her while she sat at one of the tables. This was one of the few patients I visited who could still speak and make eye contact, and … Continue reading “Lessons from Hospice Care”

Power of Voice

I was matched with a patient suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. She was not very verbal since our first meeting. I spent most of the time just sitting with her and holding her hand. I did not talk to her a lot since I found it to be very awkward to hold a one-way conversation—I am … Continue reading “Power of Voice”

The Sound of Music and Connection

My only client was Ms. Jeanette Cunniff, a 102 year old widowed mother of 2 (youngest being 77 years old), therefore I will describe what made my relationship meaningful with her. Based on the training that I had with Ascend Hospice, it doesn’t seem like Ms. Cunniff is a typical hospice patient, and that she … Continue reading “The Sound of Music and Connection”

Ascend Hospice Reflection

Before coming into this program, my only experience with Hospice care had been through my grandmother’s late years. As a grade school student at the time, I didn’t have a grasp of what was truly going on around me. All I knew was that my grandma was sick, and these people were making her comfortable. … Continue reading “Ascend Hospice Reflection”

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”

Lessons from AscendHospice

Coming into this program with no previous experience working in hospice or even volunteering in a hospital, I naturally felt quite hesitant and uncertain. My prior interactions with patients were very limited in scope and although I felt rather unprepared, I was very eager to learn more. I wanted to build on my ability to … Continue reading “Lessons from AscendHospice”

Hospice Reflection

When given the opportunity to volunteer with hospice patients at the Wayne Center in Wayne, PA, I was eager to help but also a little apprehensive. My mind was fresh with the death of my grandfather, who had been diagnosed with progressive supranuclear palsy just years earlier, a degenerative neurological disease with no known cure. … Continue reading “Hospice Reflection”

She had worked in a nursing home for a significant portion of her life

I only knew Mrs. T for a short time before she passed. My knowledge of her was constrained to such a small context. I knew Mrs. T as someone who enjoyed sitting in the sunroom just by the nurse’s station, as someone who was not afraid to ask for a hug, and as someone who … Continue reading “She had worked in a nursing home for a significant portion of her life”