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Life, Death and tomorrow


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Yesterday (Tuesday here) as I entered a ward at the hospital a voice called to me, "Have you done Room 1 yet?". arrgh My response was "No" as nobody had asked me. Now what I was being asked was, "Had I Blessed the Room", which is a requirement by the hospital after a death.

When I entered the room the deceased was still there so I backed out quietly and told the staff the lady who had died was still in the room.

As I waited for her removal to take place I started thinking about how familiar death can become to staff and so the request about the room being "done" started to eat at me. The lady was someone's wife, mother, friend; and yet who passing had quickly moved to a matter of procedural action.

I am aware that over recent times a number of you here have been affected by the death of someone special to you or special to someone whose friendship you value. I hope that the passing of such loved ones has been treated with dignity and mourning has been able to take place appropriately.

I have spoken to the staff on the ward and while applauding them for the high level of care they give and the difficult situations they deal with, I also suggested that they might like to treat every person who passes away on their ward as a special life no longer being lived amongst those who cherished them.

Tomorrow,(Thursday here) I attend a funeral of a patient who had a stroke last year. Kiwi and I attended his son's wedding a few years ago so he is more that "just another patient who has died".

On Friday I attend the funeral of a patient I have been visiting; he's also father of a patient who I have visited on and off over recent months. I also worked for a number of years with his other son.

So how does one get above the sadness of funerals? Well Saturday I am taking a Wedding of the son of one of the staff members. happy A time of new beginnings! And then of course there's always the trip to the USA to lift my spirits.

But I know I am not the only person on this board for whom death and sad things seem to keep slamming into life. And so I want to encourage you all and say the death of one person, heralds for us the need to make the most and best of each day and bring light and love to others and so to ourselves.

Muzza cool

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It was the hospital chaplain who helped me say prayers over my mother and honor her passing the night I was there alone with her. He gave her dignity and worth and that was a gift to us as well. Your work is most special.

My family thanks you both for your wisdom in this post and for your messages of support all week long. Our minds must be thinking similarly. You will find in your mailbox some of the humorous and positive incidents regarding the young man you have helped us grieve. I had just sent them out to you to lift your hearts right before I came here to check out the topics! More than a coincidence! <smile>

I also want to thank Beth (Bessieboo) and Kim (Boopell) who have virtually held my hands, one on each side, and listened to me cry and talk this through all week as have you and Marilyn. The love and support you have given my family has been far above and beyond a simple message board!

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My Dad passed away in November of 06"...His last days were spent in Hospice...a beautiful facility, the staff was very compasionate and kind...I have an older brother, older sister and a younger brother, and most of the decisions fell on my shoulders...My Dad was a simple man, he wanted no service or funeral..He wanted to be creamated, and his ashes taken out to the sea...I was with him at the end...I closed his eyes after the life left his body, and we all prayed by his bedside..the "Lords prayer"...I miss my Dad...He was our Rock, but I cared for him the last 2 years of his life, and he told me many times...that he welcomed death, because if this was considered living, than he didn't want to anymore...I kept telling him.."Dad the good lord will take you whan he's ready for you, and not a moment sooner....I take care of my Mom now, she's nearly blind, and diabetic, with heart trouble..she misses Dad so much..she tells me she see's him at night in their room...I believe her..I know he's watching out over her, until they can be together again.

I was a Nurses aide for 17 years and saw death many times, I felt what the family felt, as I always formed a bond with most of my patients...I just try to live each day to the fullest, and try and treat others with kindness(thou sometimes thats a hard one)...life is short...make it count.

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You're a shining light, Muz. And I know the lady's spirit is grateful and will bless you for your kind efforts in her behalf.

In today's world, life has become cheap in many arenas and this is extremely dismaying. Thank God for those like you who remind us that life is indeed the greatest gift of all, followed closely by love, of which you have so much!

smile --Love, Darlene

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Darlene, Shelley, James and Kathy Lee... I'm just an everyday sorta guy who loves people, being with people and trying to bring light and hope into their lives. happy I count it a real privilege to be doing what I do, both in service for my Lord and for a job.

I have to be honest though I find some people quite difficult to like and that can get me into trouble sometimes. I'm sure many people on this board bring similar positive things to people's lives everyday. It's just that they often will go unrecognised, whereas the profile of being a chaplain puts me into situations many wont encounter and what I do is often in the "public eye".

Thank you for your comments though.

Muzza cool

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Thank you Muzza--that was very beautifarul.

I started working in long-term care in 1991 and so I got "used" to people dying for a time. Then, our social worker got a little round table and put a cloth on it, a red silk rose and a box and some paper and a pen. She put it in a nook in a hallway at the nursing home whenever someone died. The employees were encouraged to write their goodbyes or a memory, or anything else they wanted to share on the paper and put them in the box. The box was presented to the family a couple of weeks after the loss.

Bless you for what you give, Muzza.


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