When people hear that I am a Hospice Volunteer, I often get remarks, like “0h, you are so good to do that” or “That must be so hard for you.”
The truth is that it feeds me as well as, or more than the clients I see.
You see,my father and brother both died suddenly when I was in my early 20’s and 30’s, leaving no time to say what I wished they had been able to hear. This type of grief has left me with a deep understanding and heart for families dealing with loosing ones they love. And my being of help somehow fills that hole left from that long ago time.
I find that this is not so unusual. Hospice volunteers do have a heart for those in a sudden, unexpected place and wish to make it better, if only by respectfully walking with them and helping in any way that soothes.
There is no “right way” and I find that the most important part of this work is respect and acceptance of what the patient and family feel they need. We have been given excellent training in finding various activities and providing different services to help the families we serve, it is a privilege and a blessing to walk with them, listen, provide respite care, and to hear their amazing life stories.