They didn’t know each other, and they only knew me in the briefest and most problematic of days.
One Was Dying. Another was Near Death. The third was During Grief.
I think of them now, years—and decades—later, equally grateful and humbled for what I learned while spending time with them. As always, I will try to change a little or a lot of their story to disguise each guy’s true identity.
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Guy Dying . . .
Long ago, I was his hospice chaplain, randomly assigned by my supervisor to be part of his hospice care “team.” Guy Dying had COPD. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is an inflammatory lung disease that causes obstructed airflow. It can make breathing increasingly difficult. Be rude, and call it an old smoker’s illness. Be reasonable and acknowledge that with our guaranteed weaknesses as aging humans—often living or working in places with poor air quality, and that from birth until the day you die your lungs never cease working—COPD doesn’t care if you smoked two packs a day or never touched a cigarette. Read More →by