One of my first patients was a hard situation, a lady who had much hurt and sadly had hurt most of those close to her. She had severe physical and spiritual pain and it seemed like medication wasn’t helping her. The whole team was working hard to bring the most comfort we could to this lady. I remember a phone call I got right before closing one Friday night. Her daughter asked me to come pray with her and her two siblings and help them say goodbye to their mom. Their family dynamics were heartbreaking, one of her adult children had hardly even talked to her the last few years. The three adult children were in the dinning room, sitting around the table when I arrived. Their mom was in the living room, bed-bound at this point and mainly unresponsive. I suggested each of them take a few moments to think about what they want to say to their mom. The forgiveness that they needed to shed and she might need to hear. How this could bring closure and comfort that they all needed. We made a plan to all go in the room together, I would pray with them, and each would have time alone with their mom. One of them was against staying in the room alone, but was willing to go in with us. We went in and held hands, I talked to the patient letting her know we were with her, and who was in the room. She squeezed my hand in acknowledgment. This was an encouragement to the family to see her respond. After I prayed, we started to leave and the one who didn’t want to stay ended up sitting down on the chair and held his mom’s hand. After about 15 minutes, he came out, with tears in his eyes, but said how much he needed that. You could see the burden of hurt slowly lifting in each of their hearts. She ended up passing away the next day more peacefully then we could have imagined for her. The power of forgiveness brings peace.
Spiritual Care Provider
Heart ‘n Home Hospice & Palliative Care, LLC