Well, the work project that we started a few weeks ago took a very different path today. Again, I won’t go into details and compromise our patient’s privacy, but I’m sure you can guess from the photo that this story is a tough one. Unlike our last photo session, this is not the story of an elderly person who looks over her life with a deep sigh of satisfaction…and looks with anticipation to a heavenly reunion with her beloved husband. No, this is not that story. This is the story of a young parent who will soon no longer be here to hold this little hand.
I have to tell you, in the short time I’ve been in my new job, I’ve been surprised to learn that Hospice is as much about celebrating life as is it is grieving death. It’s been such an eye-opener. I had no idea that the heart could hold so much grief and gratitude at the same time. My job today was to preserve as many memories for this family as I could…kisses, smiles, touches, hugs, the sweetest whispers. I’ll go back tomorrow for another session as well. I can only hope and pray that this child will be able to one day look to these photos as evidence of the overwhelming love that binds them together. On one hand, I’m so grateful to be of even the smallest service to this family, but on the other, my heart is breaking for them.
Before I took this job, a day like this would’ve been the perfect opportunity to make sure that my kids heard an extra “I love you.” Now thanks to this job, I’m reminded that every day should be the perfect day for that.