Team Livingston: Denise Ludwig - Volunteer With A Heart…
“It was the greatest honor and the hardest thing I have ever done in my life,” says Hospice volunteer Denise Ludwig about caring for her mom in her last days. “We gave her the gift of fulfilling her wish to die at home, surrounded by her kids. “
In December 2007, Denise’s mom was diagnosed with cancer that had already metastasized to her bone. She was released to homecare under Livingston Hospice soon thereafter where Denise and her brother and sister stepped in to become her primary caregivers. “Livingston took care of my mom for 3 months and the minute they walked in the door, I told my brother “these are my people,” she says. The 24/7 lifeline that Livingston provided became crucial to Denise and her siblings as they sought to provide relief for their mom’s suffering. “We received so much from our nurse. She gave us the confidence to administer the meds; coached us in managing my mom's symptoms, pain and anxiety; and helped us evaluate her state of mind.”
A year after her mom passed in 2009, Denise decided to become a Hospice volunteer. “I wanted to allow others to experience the great honor of being with their loved ones in the last days of their life as I had.” She started out by doing bereavement calls – checking in on spouse and family members after a loved one had passed. She then transitioned into becoming an on-call caregiver for those in need. “There is nothing better in the world than me being able to be part of that. The relief and gratitude the families express is humbling. It is my great honor to be able to help in this capacity for Livingston. The patients and I are eternally grateful for all of you and those big hearts of yours.”
And we are eternally grateful for your big heart as well Denise. Thank you for all you do.