An Abundant Way to Leave the World that Removes the Burden on the Family
My grandma died last week. Four years ago, she was diagnosed with rare stomach cancer. She went through surgery to remove it at 81. That hurt. She never was quite the same. She went on palliative care. The cancer came back. My family chose to move in with her.
For a number of months, palliative care managed her pain. She wasn’t great with pain, so my grandma had to know. “When will I die?” she asked her physician. “3-6 months,” he said. That day, we put her on hospice: the best decision we ever made.
Now grandma was the matriarch of our entire family. Throughout her life, she was the glue that kept us all together. She demanded that the entire family—her four children, 8 grandchildren, great-grandchild, and all spouses—celebrated Christmas every other year and get together for big life events. She was relentless.
Family meant the world to her. It was so special for her to be cared for at her home, having lived there for 60 years. She was grateful to near her life’s end surrounded by memories and love. I’m convinced, in-home hospice care was the reason she left this world full.
Hospice was a wonderful gift for her, but also such a blessing for our family. Dealing with medicine management, taking her to the doctor, running her errands—it was just so taxing. When we moved her to hospice, nurses came to her, meds were delivered to the door, access to clinicians was immediate—life was so much easier.
Toward the end, caregiving got too challenging for us. We worked with our hospice team to provide grandma full-time care during the day. That quickly escalated to around-the-clock care. Our team of caregivers (three) and nurses became our extended family. Over the course of 5 months on hospice, they would join us for dinner, play with our son, and most importantly, offered my grandma a hand to hold. She was scared after all; leaving her family was hard.
After a long couple of weeks, grandma passed away. Our wonderful nurse came over immediately and took care of her. She cleaned her up, gave her a fresh pair of pajamas, and cut some flowers in the yard to put in her hands. After that, she called the morgue to retrieve her body. Looking back, that was so wonderful. It allowed us to mourn. The logistics were taken care of, everyone could rest.
Through Constellation’s Complete Care at Home approach, your loved ones too can benefit from passing away in the comfort of their own home, safely surrounded by compassionate care. Constellation is an award-winning, value-based company that delivers qualified and compassionate professionals, innovative technology solutions, and a range of support services to wherever you, your loved ones, or your patients call home. Learn more about our approach to home health care.