Active Listening

I wanted to share a Home Care Story that I always found touching. Our aides were given a writing assignment on “Active Listening” as a reminder to be a compassionate listener to help elders cope with the changes and challenges of aging. It was a reminder of how they make a difference to their elders every day.

Our aide Jessica turned in the following paragraph.

"Carl-deceased now-I did his overnight care while he was on hospice. His family never talked about his upcoming death. He would wake up at night and ask me if he could talk to me about it with him. I did. He changed a lot of my views on death and dying. It broke his heart that his family 'tip toed' around what was a fact-his death. When he wanted to discuss it they hushed him. So for about 4 weeks it was him and I. Usually at 2 am- he would talk to me about religion, his life he lived, how he was ready to go. He was at peace and his cancer was not painful. I truly believe he did not suffer because he was ready and waiting and he accepted it. He just wished his family knew how he felt. I hope I helped him and eased some of his burdens."

I found this a true example of the impact our aides have on their clients as well as the impact the clients have on their aides. The bond can last a lifetime.

Respectfully Submitted by

Stephanie Conway, Executive Director
Home & Health Care Services, Inc.