National Hospice Awareness Month
It’s a calling!
Culley Burleson knew in high school that she wanted to work in Hospice. During that time in Culley’s life, her grandpa Bill came to live with their family after receiving a terminal cancer diagnosis. Culley watched as Bill would spruce himself up and put on his best shirt to be ready for his hospice nurse to visit. Not only did the nurse take care of his medical needs, but she also provided a jovial banter and witty conversation that would brighten grandpa Bill’s day.
Years later, Culley is now NHC’s Hospice Clinical Manager. She recently took Carli, a new hospice nurse, around to meet the patients she will care for. One of the most memorable introductions was Ms. Askew. This lady has been with Nayar Health Care and Hospice for years. Ms. Askew was one of the first referrals NHC received into home health, and she was eventually referred to Hospice due to her declining cognitive ability. Culley recounted the visit for us:
“Carli and I walk in. I remind Ms. Askew who I am, introduce Carli, and go straight into the kitchen to wash her dishes and tidy up so Carli could assess her without me hovering. The whole time Ms. Askew acted like she didn’t want us there, complete with a few curse words and very raw comments. Once they finished, I talked Ms. Askew into going out onto her porch to enjoy the beautiful weather. I asked if I could brush her hair, and she let me. We exchanged good-natured insults and matched whits while she shot Carlie a knowing grin. The next day Ms. Askew’s granddaughter sent me this text: “Good Morning! I just thought I’d tell you what my grandma told me last night. ‘I just love that woman who came here today. She’s a good friend of mine.’” I laughed out loud when I read it—THIS! THIS RIGHT HERE is EXACTLY why I became a hospice nurse!
I see my grandpa in every patient I care for. I remember the feeling I had when seeing him so happy when his hospice nurse would come. So I chose this career. It’s a calling. Yes, this work is hard. I have cried so much. However, deep in my heart, I know I am doing okay at this hospice thing! If I can bring even a fraction of the joy that nurse brought to my grandpa Bill, it is all worth it. Ms. Askew is someone’s mom, grandma, sister, and friend, just like my grandpa Bill. She deserves to be treated like she is valued and loved. I get to see little glimpses of who she was before her disease, and I will take the opportunity every chance I get to continue to see those glimpses before she passes.
Nayar Health Care is a leading home health care provider.
Our prime focus is to provide the highest quality of home health care to patients in their most familiar home environment. We admit patients within 24-48 hours, including weekends. Our team ensures that the patient gets the skilled home health care needed to maintain a healthy recovery with the comfort and ease of being at home.
Is Hospice Right for Your Loved One?
Hospice is for living your best life. We offer a full spectrum of services at Nayar Hospice for you and your family. Home-based nursing care, professional hygiene assistance, and non-judgmental emotional and spiritual support. We dedicated ourselves to taking care of the things that prevent you from focusing on your life, your loved ones, and your comfort.
Around Town with NHC:
Elaine Buchanan & Debra Maxwell, Home Health Community Liaison team, conducted an in-service “Lunch & Learn” with the MD Hospitalists and Hospital Case Management Team at John Randolph Medical Center in Hopewell.
Life of Legacy
Custom memoir books, custom curated by the social workers at Nayar Hospice for every Hospice patient. Thanksgiving is a great time to learn about family traditions and stories. The Legacy Book details a hospice patient’s life journey from birthplace and childhood to marriages, careers, interests, and what they want their families to remember. So much research goes into these stories to ensure they are accurate and capture their story. In its completion, the final Legacy Book captures their personality and lives. It’s a beautiful way to keep your loved ones’ memories alive from generation to generation.
Butternut Squash Soup
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 large yellow onion, chopped
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- 1 (3-pound) butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cubed
- 3 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
- ½ tablespoon minced fresh rosemary
- 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
- 3 to 4 cups vegetable broth
- Freshly ground black pepper
Directions: Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion, salt, and several grinds of fresh pepper and sauté until soft, 5 to 8 minutes. Add the squash and cook until it begins to soften, occasionally stirring, for 8 to 10 minutes.
Add the garlic, sage, rosemary, and ginger. Stir and cook 30 seconds to 1 minute, until fragrant, then add 3 cups of the broth. Bring to a boil, cover, and reduce heat to a simmer. Cook until the squash is tender, 20 to 30 minutes.
Let cool slightly and pour the soup into a blender, working in batches if necessary, and blend until smooth. If your soup is too thick, add up to 1 cup more broth and blend. Season to taste and serve with parsley, pepitas, and crusty bread.