Hospice nurse Marilyn ministered to my mother October-December 2011.
A card arrived earlier this month—a greeting from my mother’s principal hospice nurse. She was acknowledging, with the comforting gesture of a card and her words, my mother’s June 12 birthday anniversary, the first since her death on Dec. 6, 2011.
This nurse and her colleagues from Forrest General Hospice were such a blessing to my mother, me, my brother and Mother’s other relatives, friends, and caregivers who were present during her final few months and weeks. Their knowledge, experience and love surrounded Mother and comforted me. And when death came, hospice nurse Becky was quickly at our side to take care of immediate details, creating a sense of calm and respect.
The hospice staff and volunteers held a memorial service in March for all the patients who had died during the previous 12 months. Husband Walter and I made the 90-minute drive from the coast to the service in Hattiesburg. We had arranged to meet two of my cousins who had surrounded my mother with loving care and attention.
The investment of time and effort to organize the memorial was in itself a source of comfort. But I also anticipated the opportunity to say an in-person “thank you” to the nurses who had worked with Mother. They had eased her transition and mine at the end of her life.
It was also an opportunity to spend some time with my cousins Carolyn and Judy who had stepped in when my post-stroke limitations prevented my being with Mother as much as I wanted to be.
Three caring spirits, are, from the left, my cousins Carolyn and Judy with hospice nurse Becky.