Monday, August 30, 2010

The goodbyes

My heart is a bit heavy today as the 25 year young man died over the weekend. I will facilitate a celebration of life ceremony on Saturday which I am honored to do. I had hoped that my first memorial service would have been for an elderly person that was surrounded by family and memories. Instead, we will celebrate the life of a 25 year old that loved life and could find richness and meaning in every today. We should all learn that lesson.

There is no such thing as an insignificant or accidental relationship. Every encounter, no matter how brief or profound, is meaningful. So for this young man, he taught others to laugh, to smile, and that most things are not worth fighting about. He wanted to use his energy to reach out to others. And he will be remembered for that. I will always remember the way he would say, "I feel fantastic."

There are 160 volunteers that provide services to the hospice house. They bring pets, bake cookies, feed patients, sit with patients, read to them, clean carpets, hammer nails, sing, make crafts, and just about anything you can think of. And they all do whatever they do with a smile...people love helping others. Sometimes in the outside world and the fast pace of life, we forget kindness. But in hospice care, time slows down, sometimes it even stops, and then you can see the goodness and compassion of so many.

On an easier note, I found Whole Foods in Tampa over the weekend which was great fun. On Sunday, longtime friends from Venice, FL came to visit. Have I mentioned that I love visitors? So Florida is hot and rainy but "fantastic."

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