As I drove to my destination, I went over memories of him throughout my life. He was always getting smart and talking mad trash (as my mother would always say) to my mother and about my name. They were fun thoughts and memories that were preparing me to be supportive of his wife and children (so I thought). I asked for directions at the front desk and proceeded to follow the instructions given and I arrived on his floor (without getting lost). What I expected to find, the mood, the atmosphere, the spirit in the room was not there!!!
What greeted me was a family, his wife, my aunts and other family
members trying the best they could to make him as comfortable as possible and cracking jokes (WHAT JOKES in HOSPICE???). I know that is what you're thinking, yes jokes in hospice. His wife and daughter were having a very funny back and forth banter with this man who lived his life THAT WAY! It was a loving conversation between the man and his family, that I am sure his spirit (without the pain) found joy in. As I silently prayed and laughed out loud (more than a few times), it occurred to me what must be the best things I can think of for anyone walking in the valley of the shadow.
To be comforted, be at peace, surrounded by those who have been by your side thru the good and the bad and to have giggles and more Giggles in the Valley is to me the essence of a life fully lived.