I was really rather amused at janh’s post on New Year’s resolutions or more likely in her case revolutions!

Not that I could be bothered with such self improving claptrap for a moment, far too dissolute, disinterested and indolent to even consider a list.

However, by sheer chance, I have managed to rather trap myself into something I have been vaguely considering for six months or so. Believe it or not, I rather miss the dying, after 8 years of extensive practise I miss the conversation of those past caring about the impression they make on others, so had tiptoed around the thoughts of volunteering at a hospice.

This country deals with dying in a quite hideous manner, as if it is a disease that can be staved off by hope, bright cheery fake voices and a total refusal to face realities of non existence with a huge indegestible dollop of christianity to gag the most enthusiastic!

Anyway, it went thus, I happened to be in the library last week and there on the noticeboard was a request and course for volunteers at the newly built hospice ( the only one in the county).  I rang them up and explained I didn’t ‘do’ faith, children or women, but crusty males were just fine, I got a laugh.

“All the ones no one else can cope with eh?”


Oh God, hoist on my own petard, I start a course at the end of the month. Nothing like seeing the poor old sods off fast is there?  Some of my more laconic observations should send them on their way with an unexpected laugh or a heartfelt desire for ‘the off’.  I shall be quite back in harness.

I do hope I am not spoiling my record of a lifetime of non event New Year revolutions.  No, and you can’t have pictures!

Author: christinaosborne

Landed on one side safely.

14 thoughts on “wwwww”

  1. Can’t wait for the posts and the humour! What a refreshing outlook you have; I am sure you will set your stamp upon the whole building. Good luck and very best wishes though I wouldn’t be surprised if you end up The Course Advisor. Or kicked out!

  2. I congratulate you Christina, but most of all I admire you (probably always have, but don’t let that go to your head for gods sake). Keep us posted.

  3. I’m sure you will have a lot to offer, avoiding, as a dying friend once took off brilliantly, the ‘head on one side, hands clasped in the lap, sympathetic listening mode’ – and I hope the course is useful and gives you strategies of coping with the hospice sadnesses when visits take you to raw places in your own recent experience. I echo Val’s admiration.

  4. Good for you CO. Hospices are about the only charities I genuinely care about. Yesterday I was called away from lunch by a friend whose husband had died that morning. He had been suffering with pancreatic cancer since June. They had come out to Cape Town from England just before Christmas so that he could die in relative comfort. Berkshire was just to cold and life there was too complicated. I spent a lot of time with them over the past few weeks as she needed help in picking him up if he fell over, which he did from time to time, while manoeuvring from his zimmer frame to the loo and back to his arm chair. His deterioration during that time was shocking. Recently he had been put on 24 hour pain relief, but prior to that he had suffered a great deal. Not only was there physical discomfort but the humiliation of incontinence and having to wear nappies and not being able do anything for himself. Friends of mine have just had a baby. In comparing the two, the Seventh stage of man was never more clearly demonstrated. He was a wonderful man who achieved a great deal in his life and possessed a brilliant mind. Yet he was always supremely interested in other people and sought their company, especially those younger than him. He was a great listener and he always took interest in what others had to say, rather than just waiting for a chance to speak. I went to see him on Saturday. He was barely conscious, but I felt that he might last a few more days. His wife insisted I said goodbye. His last words to me, typically generous and selfless and requiring a great deal of effort, were words of thanks. We had discussed his dying earlier and he had said that he was not remotely bothered by it other than he did not want to be a burden to others and he was concerned about his family, especially his wife. They had been married 43 years.

    Dying must be an intensely lonely affair. I think you are doing a wonderful thing.

  5. All I can say is good luck and well done, Christina. I am sure your common sense and acerbic wit will find favour there 🙂

  6. Sipu I won’t quote you but you speak splendidly of your friend’s husband. I hope the sun and warmth was a comfort to him. Sometimes it is not just what we do or say, but its about “being there”. Well that’s how I see it.

  7. Damn it, Tina, why didn’t I think of New Year Revolutions???

    You will, undoubtedly, make a wicked volunteer and strike just the right tone with the crusty who don’t want tea and sympathy. Sipu is dead right. You are doing a wonderful thing. And yes, that definitely counts as a New Year resolution, so hard luck!! 🙂

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