When Evening Comes: The Education of a Hospice Volunteer

Christine Andreae

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When Evening Comes: The Education of a Hospice Volunteer

When Evening Comes The Education of a Hospice Volunteer When Christine Andreae signed up for twenty seven hours of patient care training with the Blue Ridge Hospice in Virginia s Shenandoah Valley her parents were still living and her grandparents funeral

  • Title: When Evening Comes: The Education of a Hospice Volunteer
  • Author: Christine Andreae
  • ISBN: 9780312268718
  • Page: 151
  • Format: Hardcover
  • When Christine Andreae signed up for twenty seven hours of patient care training with the Blue Ridge Hospice in Virginia s Shenandoah Valley, her parents were still living and her grandparents funerals hadn t involved a viewing Her only direct experience with death had been when, at the age of six, she had gone with her father to the viewing for the family s parish priesWhen Christine Andreae signed up for twenty seven hours of patient care training with the Blue Ridge Hospice in Virginia s Shenandoah Valley, her parents were still living and her grandparents funerals hadn t involved a viewing Her only direct experience with death had been when, at the age of six, she had gone with her father to the viewing for the family s parish priest.At a training session, the leader passed around a tray of small objects and asked participants to choose one that represented what they felt they could give to a dying person Christine randomly took an old fashioned key, for no reason that she knew And when it was her turn to speak, feeling like a liar she stammered something about opening doors to people Looking back, she says, Perhaps what I wanted was to open a door for myself In its directness and honesty, this beautiful book about accompanying the dying is far from saddening instead it is truly inspirational in the best sense Starting with Bivie, her first patient, then going to the very different Amber, and to several others whose need for care was short term, the author began to see terminal illness not as some dreaded thing hovering in the distance, but as an everyday reality She learned that because the dying continue to live until that final day comes, daily activities continue, tapering off gradually The mothers among her patients wanted to care for children and households, to manage their affairs, or to pursue other interests one, for instance, wrote very bad poetry They wanted to continue doing the things they did before their lives were interrupted by illness in most of Christine s cases, cancer.Contrary to the ideas so many of us have about our behavior in the face of terminal illness, the dying do not welcome people tiptoeing around their illness and offering solemn sympathy They want things to be as much like they had been as possible And they need someone to be there, to talk to, to listen to, to gossip with, and sometimes, of course, to complain to When her first patient, Bivie, died, Andreae wrote How presumptuous I was at the outset, thinking that I could somehow help Bivie die Ultimately, the process of dying like the process of living is a unique and solitary task for each of us No one can get it right for us On the other hand, we can bear witness to each i0other s passages At birth and death, we can hear each other, love each other, learn from each other And there is the most profound help in that for everyone present.

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      Posted by:Christine Andreae
      Published :2018-012-01T09:49:41+00:00

    One thought on “When Evening Comes: The Education of a Hospice Volunteer

    1. John Kaufmann on said:

      I was looking for advice, lessons learned. That's not what this book focused on. It was more about the range of people the author cared for - or rather, how varied and different they are, not only from each other, but from herself. You can't go into hospice with expectations, and you can't be shocked when you learn people have different lifestyles than you. And not every case/client/death/bereavement will be deep and meaningful. Sometimes you're there only to assist with some of the mundane thin [...]

    2. RĂ© Cockrell on said:

      This book raised some interesting questions for me about boundaries. Andreae's insights into her experiences as a hospice volunteer are fascinating. However, I sometimes found myself judging her involvement as being more about herself than her patients. Of course, she openly explores this side of her experiences, and she explores many possible explanations for why she volunteers for hospice. Overall, her language had moments of glimmering beauty, and she presented a fascinating array of experien [...]

    3. Liz M on said:

      It's not exciting writing, but it shows the kind of life that a hospice volunteer and her patients often go through. It's a sad revelation, as it seems that there's so much loneliness out there by those going through life's passage.

    4. Shawna on said:

      I found myself frustrated with this book, at this woman's tone and air, especially when it came to her time spent with Amber. It doesn't seem like the group appreciates Amber's limitations and her poverty. At one point Christine makes issue with being asked to pick up Amber's medicine and getting paid back later, and she says she's been stiffed before. (The medicine cost $6.) She also notes that Amber's dryer is broken. My instinct here would have been to make arrangements to get the dryer fixed [...]

    5. Westcoast_girl on said:

      'When Evening Comes' is a good story but a bad book. Composed mostly of Andreae's journal entries, the book is a very personal account of Andreae's time volunteering with two particular women through hospice. The problem with such a personal account is that diaries tend not to be ready made publishable material. Andreae's own thoughts and feelings do create an intimate record of what it is like to be a hospice volunteer, but they also leave out a lot of the rest of the story. They also, at times [...]

    6. Meredith on said:

      I am not with the negative reviewers of this book. It's not about educating the reader, it's about the emotional process of the writer while volunteering. It was useful for me, because I've been wondering if this is a thing I could do. After reading this, the answer was yes, I'd like to pursue this further. But it's not a how-to book or a resource. It's an honest personal account of how the author felt, which is valuable when considering this kind of work. And if you don't like how she felt, or [...]

    7. Saroum on said:

      An autbiography about a Hospice volunteer and her experiences. Today, I graduated from the program and am an official Sharp Hospice Volunteer. Hooray. This book is about death but from a beautiful and humane perspective. It is not dark but hopeful.

    8. Linda on said:

      I am a new hospice volunteer and also work in the emergency department, polar opposite practice areas. I found this book very helpful and appreciate the candor and wisdom of the author.

    9. Nikki on said:

      Once again I guess I expected more. It was good, and I am very interested in Hospice and helping those who are dying and their families.

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