“I was living in Florida. My mom was in Washington state and we were talking on the phone. She told me her shoulder hurt in a funny way and she was going to the doctor. The phone call came a few days later that she had lung cancer. It was terminal. It just rocked my world. I had two small boys but I needed to be with my mom. With the help of my husband and his family caring for my boys, I was able to fly to Washington to be with my mom. I was there for three months, from the time of diagnosis until the time she passed.
I cherish that time I had with my mom, but it’s also one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. As is often the case, even though there are six children in my family, the hands on care for my mom fell to me and my sister. There wasn’t any service available to help with in home care back then. We learned that although hospice offers an important service, often they only came in twice a week to check on my mom, reset her meds and maybe give her a bath. The rest of the care was up to us.
My sister and I found it was a very intimate time with my mom. She, my dad and I were the last people there, holding her and then we let her go. We said, “It’s time for you to go.” She had one tear that went down her cheek, and she passed away.
I continued on with my life but I thought to myself, there has to be some type of service that would help families through this time. Caretaking can be exhausting and yet it is one of the most precious expressions of love we can give. To be able to help families navigate this journey and give them the practical help they need is such a privilege. I know why I do what I do. We may not be the largest business of our type in Tucson, but we do things for the right reasons and with the same heart I would want for my own mom.”