One of the great resources to help folks understand hospice is the Moments of Life website. Sponsored by the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO), it gives glimpses into families making hospice decisions, along with providing answers to common questions.
One of their many videos highlighted 7-year old Riley. I don’t need to write about Riley . . . you can watch for yourself.
The Moments of Life effort is to raise awareness about a subject no one wants to discuss: dying. But I encourage you to check out some of the recorded stories and also to glance at their list of resources.
When I watched Riley’s video, I thought of some of the nurses and social workers I know who work with kids. It is never easy, but forever rewarding. The kids learn from the professionals. The professionals learn from the kids. In the video, Riley’s Mom talks about her discomfort with “strangers.” And so she invited hospice in early to help her daughter deal with her life-limiting illness . . . because she didn’t want to limit Riley’s vibrant life today. She wanted her daughter, and her other children, to be surrounded by supportive friends.
If you are considering hospice, don’t wait too long to invite the hospice team into your life. They may arrive as “strangers,” but I bet they’ll become a welcome addition to your extended family.by