The H Word

May 15, 2019




I wish I was talking about these words, but those aren't the words that I am talking about today.

The H word that I am talking about is . . . .


Earlier this year, we were at a doctor appointment for my mom. We were at the appointment because we wanted help with my mom's medication and behavior. My mom ran out of the room at the doctor appointment. Paul chased after her, as I waited for the doctor. The doctor finally came into the room. It was just me and the doctor in the room. The appointment was coming to a close, and then the doctor mentioned to me, "Hospice". I wasn't prepared to hear this word on this day. I wasn't even thinking of hospice. It was further away from my mind than any word could possibly be. Mixed emotions went through my mind and body at this time. 

After speaking with the doctor, I walked down the hallway, went down the elevator, and walked through another hallway to get out to the car that my mom & Paul were waiting in. I was in a daze & I kept thinking to myself, "keep it together, Natalie", "don't cry", "did I really just hear the H word?".

Hospice, really?

Another appointment came and went after that. Hospice wasn't really high on the doctor's radar this time.

"Phew", I thought. Even though I was confused. 

I knew that I couldn't live in denial anymore. I had seen the changes creeping up with my mom. The slow decline, day by day. The H word was going to come whether I liked it or not.

My brother, Jon, got in touch with an amazing family friend nurse who knows home health care well. Jon reached out to her to ask if there was any help that she could give us. It came to find out that she worked for a hospice company. She came out and assessed my mom.

My mom did in fact qualify for hospice. Not just barely, but more than enough. The reasons were because of weight loss, only being able to speak 5 words in a sentence or less & just not being able to communicate her needs.

I have come to realize that this is a blessing in disguise. Cindy was in need of more help and better care. 

2 weeks ago, we started the hospice journey. A nurse & bath aid visits us twice a week. We had a social worker and chaplain stop by the house. A new bed, wheel chair, and shower chair was delivered to us from help from hospice.  We are receiving medication, briefs, wipes, gloves, and chucks pads that are going to be paid for. She will now have a doctor & nurse come to her, instead of us having to take her to the doctor & nurse.

We have turned the page & have started a new chapter with hospice in our life. I sit here and am completely grateful for the extra new care that Cindy is receiving. She is blessed beyond measures.

I have no idea what the futures holds. I just focus on the NOW because that is what keeps me together.

Cindy is doing as good as she can be. She is a trooper and stronger than she will ever know. Her body is working better than her mind is. Her most popular words that she says is "Yes", "No", and "Mmm Hmmm". She barely talks, but when she talks it brightens my day.

Many thanks to Lighten Home Health & Hospice, Jacque, and Ashley for their visits and care! They have been amazing!

Thank you for your love and support!

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  1. Thank you for sharing Cindy's journey and your journey. My mom has been diagnosed with FTD as well and it honestly just helps so much to know that we are not all alone. I would not wish this on another family, but it is still comforting to know that there are others out there who understand what this means and how difficult it can be for a family to ensure their loved one with FTD can somehow continue to live a life filled with love, laughter and dignity even if that life does not really resemble the life that they previously lived.


Thank you so much for your comment! :)

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