Liz Adamshick, Manager of Volunteer Services with Hospice of Central Ohio, invited volunteer team members to reflect on what their “paycheck” looks like in a recent issue of  the Volunteer News. “There are many motivators that compel a person to consider all the ways they can spend their free time,” Liz notes. “Our volunteer Deb Hamrick captured what motivates her, and in reading it, I hope others are inspired and find affirmation for all the reasons they volunteer and serve Hospice of Central Ohio."

With deep appreciation and her permission, we share Deb’s comments here:

I guess as we begin to slip past middle age and into our senior years, we begin to realize the inevitability of the sometimes unpleasant hand life deals us in later life.  We don wrinkles, gray hair or no hair, love handles, and less-than-perfect posture, where once our youthful façade once stood.  If these annoying traits are all we face we are fortunate, because so often the wrinkles and gray hair are accompanied by debilitating illness that affects our quality of life.  My paycheck as a Hospice of Central Ohio patient companion is the opportunity to attend the end of life seminar my patients offer me free of charge each time I visit.  I wonder how they do it, waking up in pain, perhaps never totally escaping it; not remembering that their loved one visits every evening or what they ate for breakfast; having to be assisted to do what were once the simplest of tasks.  What I continually remind myself is that their current state is not their whole person; they have a lifetime of experiences that got them to the place that they now find themselves.  Having the privilege of listening to their stories from over the years is my paycheck, a paycheck no amount of money can ever replace.