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I just finished a round of bereavement calls as a volunteer for hospice. People ask how I can do this kind of work, comforting those who are suffering: it’s complicated. The other day I spoke to a man who was in so much pain over losing his wife that he shouted at me, asking if I didn’t have any mercy.
So it’s not always easy.
Strangely enough, I like to make these calls when I’m not doing well. I’m in the process of figuring out how to handle an increasingly painful case of arthritis in my hands and shoulders. When I reach out to others, I remember that some people are in much more pain than I am.
Today I had that kind of call.
When we lose a loved one, our hearts break and we may feel as if we will never be whole again. So offering a comforting and reassuring word was a blessing for the bereaved—and for me.
I especially appreciated her heartfelt thanks for my calling her and encouraging her to call one of our bereavement counselors.
For a moment, the pain in my hands disappeared.
And I felt grateful and blessed.Published in