Sunday, September 25, 2022

Creating a Culture of Care

One of the great gifts my parents gave to me was a commitment to caring for one another. I watched them, and grew up helping out, as they would mow lawns, pick up groceries, provide transportation, babysit, and otherwise provide a helping hand to both family and friends. This was especially the case as people faced sickness and grew close to death. It was an expression of generosity and love, and (most of the time!) it was given without complaint. So, it wasn’t a surprise that, within months of the day I moved away to attend university, my childhood bedroom was converted into what became my grandmother’s hospice room. I would travel home on weekends to visit her and my family, often spending hours sitting on what used to be my bedroom floor, playing guitar and sharing stories with my grandma, and sleeping on the couch, before heading back for class. After her death, that room became the temporary residence of a series of other loved ones, who needed a combination of care, supervision, or just some extra help dealing with the ups and downs of life.