It’s The Little Things
Posted by Linda Kielas, RN, Volunteer
A nurse by trade long retired, I missed that special contact caregivers have with their patients. So when I heard of JourneyCare’s CNA Assist program ̶ to partner closely with certified nursing assistants to care for hospice patients ̶ I signed up immediately. From my very first shadow shift, I knew I had made the right choice.
I have the privilege of comforting patients with my presence, my skills and the assistance of a supportive staff from whom I learn something new every time I volunteer.
I'm always amazed at what the smallest gesture can mean to a patient or family member.
Recently I was chatting with an inpatient who was very concerned about what she was having for lunch. So, together we went over the menu for the entire day so that she could look forward to what we chose. When lunch arrived, she saw all the things we had meticulously picked from the menu. “Thank you, Linda, this is just what I wanted!”
It’s not uncommon to be present with families and patients near the end of life. One morning I walked into a room where the grown son of a patient was crying. When he saw me he turned and walked away from me. I know he was hurting but it was clear he was very uncomfortable with my presence. So I handed him some tissues and left the room. When I went back to check on him, he was gone.
When I returned to the room the next day, he came up to me, grabbed my hand said, “Thank you for understanding what I needed.” And then he told me all about his mother and how much he will miss her. It’s the little things.
If you're interested in being a volunteer with JourneyCare, learn more here.