Liver Disease

By Victor Montour

liver disease

The liver plays an important role in many bodily functions from protein production and blood clotting to cholesterol, glucose (sugar), and iron metabolism. A variety of illnesses can have a negative effect on the liver causing liver disease.

The Progression of Liver Disease

There are many different types of liver disease. But no matter what type you have, the damage to your liver is likely to progress in a similar way.

Whether your liver is infected with a virus, injured by chemicals, or under attack from your own immune system, the basic danger is the same – that your liver will become so damaged that it can no longer work to keep you alive.

Anything that keeps your liver from doing its job may put your life in danger.

The Healthy Liver

Your liver helps fight infections and cleans your blood. It also helps digest food and stores energy for when you need it. A healthy liver has the amazing ability to grow back, or regenerate, when it is damaged. Anything that keeps your liver from doing its job – or from growing back after injury – may put your life in danger.

Inflammation

In the early stage of any liver disease, your liver may become inflamed. It may become tender and enlarged. Inflammation shows that your body is trying to fight an infection or heal an injury. But if the inflammation continues over time, it can start to hurt your liver permanently.

When most other parts of your body become inflamed, you can feel it – the area becomes hot and painful. But an inflamed liver may cause you no discomfort at all.

If your liver disease is diagnosed and treated successfully at this stage, the inflammation may go away.

Fibrosis

If left untreated, the inflamed liver will start to scar. As excess scar tissue grows, it replaces healthy liver tissue. This process is called fibrosis. (Scar tissue is a kind of fibrous tissue.)

Scar tissue cannot do the work that healthy liver tissue can. Moreover, scar tissue can keep blood from flowing through your liver. As more scar tissue builds up, your liver may not work as well as it once did. Or, the healthy part of your liver has to work harder to make up for the scarred part.

If your liver disease is diagnosed and treated successfully at this stage, there’s still a chance that your liver can heal itself over time.  But if left untreated, your liver may become so seriously scarred that it can no longer heal itself. This stage – when the damage cannot be reversed – is called cirrhosis.

Cirrhosis can lead to a number of complications, including liver cancer. In some people, the symptoms of cirrhosis may be the first signs of liver disease.

Liver cancer that starts in the liver is called primary liver cancer. Cirrhosis and hepatitis B are leading risk factors for primary liver cancer. But cancer can develop in the liver at any stage in the progression of liver disease.

  • You may bleed or bruise easily.
  • Water may build up in your legs and/or abdomen.
  • Your skin and eyes may take on a yellow color, a condition called jaundice.
  • Your skin may itch intensely.
  • In blood vessels leading to your liver, the blood may back up because of blockage. These blood vessels may burst.
  • You may become more sensitive to medications and their side effects.
  • You may develop insulin resistance and type-2 diabetes.
  • Toxins may build up in your brain, causing problems with concentration, memory, sleeping, or other mental functions.

Once you’ve been diagnosed with cirrhosis, treatment will focus on keeping your condition from getting worse. It may be possible to stop or slow the liver damage. It is important to protect the healthy liver tissue you have left.

Liver failure

Liver failure means that your liver is losing or has lost all of its function. It is a life-threatening condition that demands urgent medical care.

The first symptoms of liver failure are often nausea, loss of appetite, fatigue, and diarrhea. Because these symptoms can have any number of causes, it may be hard to tell that the liver is failing.

Liver failure is a life-threatening condition that demands urgent medical care and symptom management.

But as liver failure progresses, the symptoms become more serious. The patient may become confused and disoriented, and extremely sleepy. There is a risk of coma and death. Immediate treatment is needed. The medical team will try to save whatever part of the liver that still works. If this is not possible, the only option may be a liver transplant.

When liver failure occurs as a result of cirrhosis, it usually means that the liver has been failing gradually for some time, possibly for years. This is called chronic liver failure.

Chronic liver failure can also be caused by malnutrition. More rarely, liver failure can occur suddenly, in as little as 48 hours. This is called acute liver failure and is usually a reaction to poisoning or a medication overdose.

Cirrhosis, liver cancer, and liver failure are serious conditions that can threaten your life. Once you have reached these stages of liver disease, your treatment options may be very limited. If your doctor has told you treatment options are limited or not an option, remember you always have Front Range Hospice as an option. We may not be able to cure your liver disease, but we can manage the symptoms of your illness.

If you would like more information about Front Range Hospice and how we can manage your symptoms from liver disease please call 303-957-3101 or 970-776-8080 or email us at info@frhospice.com

 

 

 

 

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Anticipatory Grief-What is it and Why?

Anticipatory Grief-What is it and Why?
By Nichole Williams, MSW

Grief

“When will the grief go away?” is often a question that we as grievers, and our family and friends, say to ourselves, or one another.  We expect that these feelings will disappear after a certain time frame, sometimes people want us to “get over it.”  Grief doesn’t go away, but in turning inward to work through our grief, we grow emotionally and spiritually. We will heal in some ways, but life will never be the same as it was before.  Often times the grief begins before our loved one passes away, often it begins the day our loved one is diagnosed with their illness.  We call this Anticipatory Grief.  The feelings are much the same, with tightness in our chest, feeling out of control, being emotional, feeling scared, wanting to “wake up from this nightmare”, and questioning the meaning of life.  Anticipatory grief is not just about the future death of our loved one, but also the losses that are already occurring.

I have counseled many patients and their loved ones on what anticipatory grief is, what it feels like, and what to do about it. We grieve because we love this person, and we cannot imagine what life will be like without them.  It is often a confusing time, and often feels stressful.  We are aware of their decline, and we wonder what life will be like without them.  We grieve the loss of their abilities, the loss of future dreams, the loss of their cognition, and the loss of what life once was.  Often times, during this time, our roles change in our relationship. It is hard to go from being wife, husband, daughter, son, father, mother, sister, brother, friend to being caregiver.  We are challenged to provide the best care possible, and be strong for our loved ones.  Our loved one may be changing before our eyes and it is hard to watch.  We may wonder if we are “doing enough.”  We bear witness to their pain and suffering while loving them to the best of our ability.

Our loved ones who are dying also experience anticipatory grief.  I have spent many moments with patients and their family members helping them share their feelings with one another about what is important to them at this time in their lives.  Some people feel that they need time to reconcile or heal their relationship with someone in their life.  Some people want to celebrate their lives, spending time with those who are important to them, and to reflect on their lives.  Saying goodbye to those they love is hard.  Often cognitive impairment due to Alzheimer’s or other related Dementia is especially challenging for the caregiver as they may not know what their loved ones wants or needs are.

An important part of coping with these feelings is first to recognize them, and second, to accept that anticipatory grief is normal.  It is important to find an outlet for sharing these feelings.  Some people find talking to be helpful, others may want to read books or articles, and others may find walking in nature to be a comfort.  In acknowledging our losses, people can process the emotions that they may be feeling.  There is a common myth that if one “holds it all in and be strong” that it will help in “not feeling” the feelings that one is having.  By focusing on the reality of what is happening, and putting words to how one is feeling, it can create opportunities to hold on to one another.  Each person is going to experience and cope with anticipatory grief in different ways, but by keeping the lines of communication open, it can help everyone better understand one another at a really meaningful time.

Another important part of dealing with anticipatory grief is to take care of yourself-which is often challenging while caring for your loved one-but there are resources!  The saying goes “you can’t take care of others if you don’t care of yourself”, and I truly believe this to be true.  Caregiving and anticipatory grief can be a long road, and people need to utilize their support systems to continue providing care to their loved ones.  Asking a friend or family member to stay with your loved one so you can get out of the house or take a nap goes a long way.  Some people find that counseling is helpful to have a place to process complicated emotions without “burdening” someone. This is another way to take some “me time.”  Anticipatory grief is a natural part of losing someone we love.  We grieve because we love.

As the bereavement coordinator at Front Range Hospice, I provide counseling, grief education, and grief resources to patients, family members, and community members.  I see myself as a companion to people who are grieving.  I try to provide an empathetic, warm, caring, compassionate presence and space to hear people’s stories, and assist people in processing their feelings.

If you would like more information about Front Range Hospice and how we can support you through your grief process call 303-957-3101 or 970-776-8080 or email us at info@frhospice.com

Watch out for our next blog: Liver Disease

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Zero Care Deficiencies

By: Victor Montour

frh

Our community partner The Peaks Care Center just completed their annual survey and re-certification process with Zero Care Deficiencies. The team at the Peaks Care Center works very hard to exceed the states minimum standards while remaining patient centered. A Zero Care Deficiency survey is not an easy task to accomplish.

You see, nursing homes participating in Medicare and Medicaid are required by federal law to undergo an annual survey and certification process by its state’s health department. Homes must be in substantial compliance with Medicare and Medicaid requirements, as well as state law in order to re-certify.

Nursing home regulations require each facility to have its latest survey results readily available for review. The survey assesses whether the quality of care, as intended by the law and regulations and as needed by the resident, is being provided in the nursing home.

If a nursing home is found to be violating nursing home regulations, federal law enforcement options include denying payment for new admissions, fining the home, revoking Medicaid and Medicare certifications, transferring residents, and imposing temporary management.

The survey and certification process establishes several expectations of nursing homes, including:

  • Nursing homes participating in Medicare and Medicaid programs must remain in substantial compliance with the Medicaid/Medicare care requirements
  • All deficiencies will be addressed promptly
  • Residents will receive the care and services they need to meet their highest practicable level of functioning

If the annual certification survey finds a nursing home is deficient because it doesn’t meet a requirement of the federal nursing home regulations, the deficiency is recorded in a Survey Report Form. Deficiencies alleged by staff, residents or family members must be confirmed through records, interviews and observations. If staff, resident or family allegations are not confirmed through records, interviews, or observations, the nursing home cannot be cited as deficient. Once a survey team determines that deficiencies exist, it decides the seriousness of the violations. It looks at whether the deficiency status constitutes immediate jeopardy or actual harm, as well as whether the deficiency is isolated, constitutes a pattern or is widespread.

The Medicare website lists the most recent federal survey results, populations of the nursing homes surveyed and facts about nursing homes’ ownership.

All of us at Front Range Hospice congratulate The Peaks Care Center for this awesome accomplishment. If you would like more information about The Peaks Care Center or Front Range Hospice please call 303-957-3101 or 970-776-8080

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Thank you to our Veteran Volunteers

By Nichole Williams, MSW

 

FRH Mem. Day

 

We at Front Range Hospice would like to wish all of those who have served our Country a wonderful Memorial Day!

As part of the We Honor Veterans Level IV program, Front Range Hospice matches veteran volunteers to veteran patients.  This program developed out of the need for special care of veteran patients, due to their unique circumstances at the end of life.  In matching veteran volunteers with veteran patients, it is important to assess veteran volunteers’ military history and experience, to ensure there are no barriers in them serving patients and families.

As the Volunteer Coordinator for Front Range Hospice, I gather information from the veteran volunteers regarding what branch they served in, what their rank was, and if they were a combat veteran or non-combat veteran.  In addition, I inquire about their loss history, assess their level of comfort in being with the dying, and assess their comfort level in being with patients as they share their emotions.  I also discuss any service related trauma that they may have, and how they manage any ongoing mental health needs that they may have.

Veteran volunteers bring their military background and experience to their work in hospice, which allows them to offer life review and healing to patients who are veterans.  Being a veteran volunteer takes special skill and awareness.  Patients who are veterans feel a sense of comradery and connection when being visited by a veteran volunteer as they share common experiences, language, badges of honor, and stories of serving in the military. The services that veteran volunteers provide give patients and their families a sense of connection, a place to have their stories be “heard”, and for them to be themselves.

I want to say thank you for the tremendous service that our veteran volunteers, Jerry Kuntz, and Brian Strong, provide to our veteran patients, and the many other patients that they serve.  Both Jerry and Brian have brought their own experience and life stories, as well as an understanding of what patients who are veterans’ needs are.  They have both honored many patients who are veterans with the We Honor Veteran certificates, assisted in the pinning ceremony, and paid respect to patients by wearing their branch uniform when they visit.  Thank you Jerry and Brian!!!

For more information on how to get involved with the Front Range Hospice Veteran Volunteer Program or Hospice Services please contact us at 303-957-3101 or 970-776-8080.

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Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)

 

By Victor Montour

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis or better known as ALS is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects the nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. A-myo-trophic comes from the Greek language. “A” means no. “Myo” refers to muscle, and “Trophic” means nourishment – “No muscle nourishment.” When a muscle has no nourishment, it “atrophies” or wastes away. “Lateral” identifies the areas in a person’s spinal cord where portions of the nerve cells that signal and control the muscles are located. As this area degenerates it leads to scarring or hardening (“sclerosis”) in the region.

ALS

The progressive degeneration of the motor neurons in ALS eventually leads to the demise of the motor neurons. When the motor neurons die, the ability of the brain to initiate and control muscle movement is lost. Voluntary muscle action is progressively affected, people may lose the ability to speak, eat, move or breathe. The motor nerves that are affected when you have ALS are the motor neurons that provide voluntary movements and muscle control.

There are two different types of ALS, sporadic and familial. Sporadic which is the most common form of the disease in the U.S., is 90 – 95 percent of all cases. It may affect anyone, anywhere. Familial ALS (FALS) accounts for 5 to 10 percent of all cases in the U.S., Familial ALS means the disease is inherited. In those families, there is a 50% chance each offspring will inherit the gene mutation and may develop the disease.

Recent years have brought a wealth of new scientific understanding regarding the physiology of this disease. There is currently one FDA approved drug, riluzole, that modestly slows the progression of ALS in some people. There is not a cure or treatment that halts or reverses ALS.

Who gets ALS?

Based on U.S. population studies, a little over 5,600 people in the U.S. are diagnosed with ALS each year. (That’s 15 new cases a day.) It is estimated that as many as 30,000 Americans have the disease at any given time. According to the ALS CARE Database, 60% of the people with ALS in the Database are men and 93% of patients in the Database are Caucasian.

Most people who develop ALS are between the ages of 40 and 70, with an average age of 55 at the time of diagnosis. However, cases of the disease do occur in persons in their twenties and thirties. Generally though, ALS occurs in greater percentages as men and women grow older. ALS is 20% more common in men than in women. However with increasing age, the incidence of ALS is more equal between men and women.

There are several research studies – past and present – investigating possible risk factors that may be associated with ALS. More work is needed to conclusively determine what genetics and/or environment factors contribute to developing ALS. It is known, however, that military veterans, particularly those deployed during the Gulf War, are approximately twice as likely to develop ALS.

Facts You Should Know

  • ALS is not contagious.
  • The life expectancy of a person with ALS averages about two to five years from the time of diagnosis
  • Once ALS starts it always progresses, eventually taking away the ability to walk, dress, write, speak, swallow, and breathe and shortening the life span.
  • ALS occurs throughout the world with no racial, ethnic or socioeconomic boundaries and can affect anyone.
  • Military veterans are approximately twice as likely to develop ALS.
  • The onset of ALS often involves muscle weakness or stiffness as early symptoms. Progression of weakness, wasting and paralysis of the muscles of the limbs and trunk as well as those that control vital functions such as speech, swallowing and later breathing generally follows.
  • There can be significant costs for medical care, equipment and home health caregiving later in the disease.

ALS and Hospice Care

The nurses at Front Range Hospice know most people with ALS experience several, if not many, of the following symptoms: respiratory insufficiency, fatigue, problems with mobility, pain, dysarthria, dysphagia, problems with secretions, involuntary emotion expression disorder (IEED), depression, insomnia, and constipation. These symptoms and less common symptoms are addressed by our hospice nurses along with possible interventions to maximize ones comfort and dignity.

If you would like more information about ALS or would like more information about Front Range Hospice please call 303-957-3101 or 970-776-8080 or email us at info@frhospice.com

 

 

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No Ugly Crying

By Victor Montour

NoUglyCrying

February 27th wasn’t a typical Saturday around our house. We started the day as usual, getting up out of bed to let the dogs out. The sun was shining bright, with the cool sent of moisture in the air from the long cool night left behind. It was a glorious morning to be thankful for.

As the morning grew older my imagination started to awaken. I started imaging what the party we sent the RSVP to was going to be like. You see this is the first time I have ever been invited to a hair cutting party. Now you’re wondering what the heck is a hair cutting party. So let me explain.

In January a lovely lady we recently become friends with was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer. With a diagnosis like this I’m not sure I could handle myself with the grace, strength and love like she has. Her smile continues to light up any room she is in. Listening to her talk about her chemo treatment and her end of life plan with such confidence is amazing.

While she is planning her chemo treatment, putting her end of life plan in place and finding new housing for herself she has planned a unique party complete with friends, champagne and a full on head shaving. You see she didn’t want to go through the process of her hair falling out from her chemo. So, she chose to take control of the situation and turn something that could be devastating to a person into a time of love and joy.

The time has come for us to head to the party. In our invitation is a card that has been bedazzled with miniature pink daisies. A lady could never use to much color. We are now making our way to the destination listed on the invitations “Hanas Hope”. With a 60 minute commute ahead of us I started wondering what kind of place is Hanas Hope? I’ve never heard of it and to add to the excitement I opted to not Google the location.

When we arrived it was clearly a hair styling salon. We entered the salon and I must say I was in disbelief. I couldn’t believe what I was about to be witness to. The salon was not your typical hair salon. It didn’t have the overwhelming smell of perm solution or the subtle smell of hair coloring chemicals. What it did have was a very unique, welcoming feel to the salon. It was filled with all natural hair care products and an endless array of hats, scarves, head scarves and hundreds and hundreds of wigs. It was clear to us that Hanas Hope specializes in helping women maintain their dignity and beauty.

We were greeted by the owner who escorted us to an area in the shop which had a large dining room table and comfortable lounge furniture for us to relax and enjoy some Champaign. As the party started up we were all given a hand embroidered hanky with the words “No Ugly Crying” embroidered along the diagonal of one corner of the hanky.

The time has come for us to gather around the hair stylist’s chair. As the gentile hum of the hair clipper’s started you could hear the song pretty women start to play throughout the salon. For some the emotions were too much to handle so they quietly excused themselves from the group to take a minute to recompose themselves. Most of us remained at her side making jokes to lighten the mood while a few of her tears slowly rolled down her rose colored cheeks.

The actual hair cutting only took a couple of minutes. What happened next was amazing. The stylist finished cutting her hair and then placed the wig she had chosen on her head. Immediately the tears stopped flowing, the champagne toasts started. The smile and light of joy in her eyes as the stylist started cutting and shaping the wig to a custom fit was just amazing. When the stylist was finished cutting the wig, it was amazing. Our friend looked just like she did when she walked in the door. The hair style was amazing. I couldn’t believe how real and how amazing she looked. If I wasn’t present to witness this amazing transformation I would have never guessed she was wearing a wig.

I couldn’t imagine that day being anything better then it was. We all left feeling grateful we could be a part of something so special. I was so grateful the day was filled with love, joy, laughter and No Ugly Crying.

If you would like more information Front Range Hospice please call 303-957-3101 or 970-776-8080 or email us at info@frhospice.com

Watch out for our next blog: Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)

 

 

 

 

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With Gratitude and Blessings

By: Nichole Williams, MSW Volunteer Coordinator

volunteer.jpg

Volunteer Brenda and her therapy dog Lilly

In honor of Volunteer Appreciation Week 2016, I want to personally say thank you to all of our volunteers for their commitment, their time, and the incredible service.   Hospice would not be hospice without all of the amazing volunteers!!!

I have been working at Front Range Hospice since the beginning of the year, and I have been given the honor of working with our incredible volunteers through my role as the Volunteer Coordinator.  I have worked in hospice for 12 years, and know the value of the volunteer services.  It is such a pleasure to interact with each of them, to learn about their lives, and walk with them side by side as they provide incredible care to the patients and families that we serve here at Front Range Hospice.  I want to say thank you to ALL of our volunteers, for their kindness, their compassion, their time, and their ability to share with others in their end of life journey.

I asked two of our volunteers to share a little about what it is like to “be a hospice volunteer”:

Brenda shares:

I have been a volunteer of one sort or another for most of my adult life. I started as a pink lady at 18 (I was always taken for a candy striper because I looked so young), and have volunteered for a lot since then.  I volunteered for Attention Homes here in Boulder, as a respite house-parent, a mental health hot line called First Call for Help and one year as a Court-appointed Special Advocate (CASA). When my kids were little, I started two different support organizations for parents (Informed Parenthood – hosted speakers on issues relating to young children, and a Boulder chapter of a national organization supporting parents of gifted children.) I was active in those for several years.

When my dogs started bringing in what I call Goat-heads on their feet, I was challenged to discover the offending plant responsible, which expanded into an interest in identifying native plants. I took and then taught courses in the Native Plant Master program through the CSU Extension office. I volunteered through the Boulder Parks and Open Space department surveying rare plants in Boulder, and also with the Boulder County Parks and Open Space department in evaluation of revegetation projects.

When I was asked to serve as a Lay Eucharistic Minister for my church, I felt completely unworthy for that position, but I discovered how valuable and appreciated a few minutes of my time can be. My more recent volunteer positions are 7 years at the Longmont Humane society, walking dogs, working with them on behavior issues, and working as a receptionist at their clinic. I worked for one year at WOLF, which is a wolf and wolf-dog sanctuary west of Fort Collins. That was really cool.

In regards to why I volunteer as a hospice volunteer, I think that the short answer is because I can, and I get to take my dog. “Because I can” might seem confusing, but it’s like when I volunteered at the animal shelter. So many people would say, “Oh, I could never do that, seeing all those poor dogs. It’s so sad.” I’d tell them “You should try it, you might be surprised”. Hospice is like that. A lot of people think that they couldn’t do it, that it would be too emotional. So, I took my own advice with hospice, and tried it. When you realize what a few minutes of your time can mean to someone, how could you say no?

I volunteered at another hospice organization a few years ago, doing Pet Therapy with my white German shepherd, Maggie. But when she died suddenly of cancer, I didn’t think that my other dog, Lilly, was ready. Now I regret holding her back for so long. After getting her certification, a request came in from Front Range Hospice, and Lilly has been a real hit.

It’s always rewarding to be greeted with a big smile, and to know that the client is saying nice things about us to other people. But the most rewarding, I think, was the memorial service. I had to go through a memorial service in the atrium of a facility, to get to the stairway to visit a client upstairs. When I got to the stair landing, a woman stopped me, petted Lilly said “It’s OK.  My mother really liked dogs.” I went on up to my visit, and when I came back, the woman stopped me again and asked if I would take Lilly to say hello to her daughter, on the opposite side of the atrium. As we moved slowly and quietly around the back of the group, so as not to be disruptive, almost every person there reached out to pet Lilly as we passed and smiled a deep, heartfelt smile.  It was powerful, communal, experience, and a reminder that we touch not only the patient and their families, but sometimes the larger community as well.

When I talk to someone about my volunteering through Front Range Hospice with my dog Lilly, it usually starts with a complement to Lilly, and a question on what breed she is. (White German Shepherd and husky).  When I tell them that she’s a therapy dog and we see hospice patients, they sometimes say that they’ve thought of doing pet therapy work with their own dog. I explain to them that becoming certified as a therapy dog is really not as hard as they might think and I tell them how to go about it. Some organizations, like hospitals, have a rigorous training and testing program. For others though, the dog’s basic temperament is the most important. There are so many things you can do, from helping CU students to de-stress during finals week, to helping young children learn to read, by reading to your dog, and of course, hospice.

Pamela shares:

My father was diagnosed with terminal cancer in May 2004.  He immediately went into hospice care at home. He was only expected to live for approximately 6 weeks.  He lived for 5 additional months.  Partly because of his attitude and strong nature, and also because of the hospice care he received at home.  Hospice care enabled him to visit with family and friends, to continue many of the activities he enjoyed (golfing, wood work, etc.) and to have closure to his life.  They (hospice staff) were there for both of my parents during this time and they never felt alone in the entire process.

The most rewarding experience in hospice volunteering is meeting some incredible people who I otherwise would have never known, and being able to share their life experiences and thoughts.

Hospice volunteering is a unique experience.  It can be hard because you know that someone is approaching their end of life.  You know that they will pass and watching it can be hard.  It can be wonderful because you can make someone laugh during a difficult time, give them comfort, let them know they (and/or their family )are not alone, and just sit there and be a presence.  You learn that there are some unique wonderful people in the world, and you got to meet one of them and have them be a part of your life.

When someone knows that I do volunteer hospice work (I also volunteer at Longmont Humane Society), they usually comment on how they would never be able to something like hospice as it would be so hard to be around someone dying.  It is hard at times.  It is also something that I know we will all experience.  If I can make a positive effect for an individual or their family, then my life is enriched beyond understanding and I have gained more than anything I could have possibly provided to them.

Hospice volunteering takes a big heart, time, and a willingness to walk with patients and their families as they are dying.  It takes a person who is able to “be” with a person in their end of life process.  Walking this path with people can mean bearing witness to heartache, suffering, pain, grief and loss, and having to say goodbye.  The volunteers who provide care to the patients of Front Range Hospice are a tremendous gift to not only the patients and families, but also to the rest of the hospice team.  Our patients often have a deep connection with their volunteer, they truly are part of the team!

If you would like more information about Front Range Hospice and how to get involved in the volunteer program call 303-957-3101 or 970-776-8080 or email us at info@frhospice.com.

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