Feb

25

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Categories: celebrant musings

Regrets

Susie Steiner wrote in the Guardian a year ago that the following are the most common regrets of hospice patients:

  1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
  2. I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.
  3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.
  4. I wish I’d stayed in touch with my friends.
  5. I wish I’d let myself be happier.

When I look at the list I find I don’t share most of these regrets.  However, I can claim Number 4.  It’s a good thing I have time to work on this!

What’s your greatest regret so far, and what will you set out to achieve or change before you die?

Feb

18

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Categories: celebrant musings

Touching Hearts

Today our Phoenix West Threshold Choir sang for the first time for folks we do not know.  We visited a nursing center close to our practice place.  Other than a request for going through the hand signals one more time, we felt pretty good about our work.

Trudy was the last person we visited.  During our song about sending her “light to heal her and hold her”, tears began coursing her cheeks.  One of our singers handed her a tissue box.  We wiped tears from our own eyes.  Her comment buoyed us as we left, ready to work harder to perfect our gift of song.

What she said was, “You truly touch hearts.”

Feb

3

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Bearing Witness

Today I was invited to a family’s “difficult talk” about permission to die, when is it right to ask for help, what can we do to ease the load, what regrets will we have after the loved one passes?  Mom and four daughters connected in person and by speaker phone. 

Many tears and frequent bursts of laughter connected the love-filled discussion.  How honored I feel to bear witness to such courageous and caring women’s acts and depths of compassion.