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Denise Henderson

Thank you for the reassurance. Your words make me feel better about decisions I've made and will make in the future.

Vicki in Michigan

Thank you, Carol. I appreciate you sharing truths with us, especially about end of life, because I think our culture doesn't handle it well........


This is helpful, Carol. My dad has metastatic prostate cancer and besides my mom's care, is being helped by hospice at home. He's not at the end yet (though we thought we were going to lose him in early November when he wouldn't eat) but it is coming, and this is good to know.

Dotti C

Great article! I think the two biggest physical changes we go through are the beginning and the ending of life. We all know how most folks embrace change even when we have the capacity to know about it and deal with it...with great trepidation!

My husband was a hospice volunteer for years and every time he lost a patient he met it with surprise and grief...as if the death was unexpected. I would have to remind him that the pre-death days were why he was there in the first place.

Strange how that works!


Thank you for the work you do and the compassion and care you share with others. My brother had been struggling with heart problems and had been on dialysis for years. He died peacefully in his sleep this past weekend...in his home. Unfortunately, my SIL woke to find him gone, so now I hope to be able to offer support to her. She is also dealing with health problems...she has cancer and is going through chemo. We struggle to understand why all of this pain happens to such good people, but we have to continue to live as best we can. My brother Bob was only 60 years old and he & Cindy were married for 28 years. Hug those you love and always tell them you love them. I'm grateful he didn't have a lingering death, but this sudden death is still not easy to deal with. I am trying to find comfort in the fact that his struggle is over.

Linda Watson

My goodness but you are a blessing. In my very limited experience, as a friend and as a practitioner in my church, it seems to me that a person will often wait to die until everyone leaves the room. I've been there when that wasn't true, but many more times, that person left when he or she was alone. I've puzzled over this for years, not in the least certain that there is any kind of an answer, but perhaps there are, for some, things best done on their own? Or maybe thinking it is less upsetting? Haven't a clue, or even certain this much thought is going on with the person, just something I've noticed.


Thank you for what you do, Carol. I watched the hospice workers come in and visit and care for my mother and it was such a positive experience for all of us. They were strong and caring and they answered all our questions with love and respect. I now have stage 4 cancer and while it isn't my time yet, I know that hospice will be there for me and my family.


Thank you.


Your posts on this subject are always so thoughtfully written. I have shared a few of them with my family, in our many discussions we've had on this subject. When my father was in hospice care, we were so grateful for them. Even though we knew his time on earth was coming to an end, we experienced the peace and tranquility that all of the hospice care givers had to offer us, and him. It made such a difference in the way we handled it. We have all had the talk, and know when it comes time to call them for my mother, we are prepared.


Long time reader of your blog I remembered your words and discussions about palliative care and was able to involve a similar team for my mother when the time came. My family didn't understand at first but it went exactly as you just described. Those 5 days were hard to watch but we knew she was comfortable and we were supported.Thank you for your reassuring words.

Leslie J. Moran

As always, the answers we need when sometimes we don't even know the questions. Thank you - forever.


Kindest regards,missy from the bayou


Thank you for this post. My mom died 13 years ago. She held on day after day ... we couldn't figure out why or how. They kept asking me if I'd told her it was OK to go. I had, several times. Then one day a granddaughter showed up, one she hadn't seen or talked to. And the next day she died. Apparently she'd been waiting for Melanie to show up. My husband died 7 weeks ago. His care provider was skilled in hospice. He asked me if I wanted to know what would happen and approximately when. My husband didn't want to know and I didn't either. Luckily he was able to let me know gently that I needed to say goodbye and was there with me when he passed. It was so helpful to know what was happening physically. Bless you for the work you do!

Peggy Fry

I think leaving this world is every bit as hard as it was getting into it. Hospice people are remarkable and wonderful. It takes very special people to do that. And yes, I think dying must be a very private, intimate thing and that many of them do choose a time when they are alone. My husband chose the moment when I was looking away, distracted by the TV. The silence is what alerted me to his passing. I still dream about that moment. I hope he is okay now. Thank you for sharing this with us all!


Palliative, palliative, palliative...angel, angel, angel. You are.
Thank you for this post and all of them, really.

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