First Book Published

Here’s a really neat story in my life! I have just brought home the first 100 printed books of Conversations: Living Through the Process of Dying. A book I wrote to help people talk about their wishes and needs when they are at the end of their life.

My website will be up and running in a couple of weeks. You will be able to order this book on that site.

My hope is that individuals will read it and that hospice organizations and schools will use it as a tool for teaching and talking about the sacred act of dying.

Conversations: Living Through the Process of Dying
by me, Jackie J Bates RN CHPN



Are they for loss?

I’d venture to say every failure is a stepping stone closer to a dream come true. If not a dream, perhaps getting closer to a goal or a vision.  We ALL have points in time where the result of “failure” applies to our lives.

What will we do with the information of “failed?”  I can tell you I had one this week and I said, “NO!  LET ME TURN THE CLOCK BACK AND TRY AGAIN!”  But, no such luck, time ticked on and the record was in the books.  ARGH…

Yet…the emotions are passing, plan B is coming in to the picture and life is definitely going on.  Regroup and press through…thank you anyone that encouraged me along the way.





Celebrating Accomplishments

A recurrent theme crossing my life lately is to celebrate your accomplishments. Going ahead and taking time to acknowledge and enjoy a moment in time because of a goal or project being met.

One of my celebrations today is that I am having a Birthday! Another one today is being able to see a long-range dream getting closer to a reality. Another one that I celebrate is being able to enter in with others accomplishments.

Celebrating your own accomplishments and celebrating other’s is an encouraging part of life!

Enjoy the party!


Not a Performance

I have been trying to process through the verbal comments I hear regarding my work.  The process has been necessary and helpful.

The most important perspective is that my work is not a performance.  There is no planned choreography, no scripts, no calculated outcomes that can be counted on.  Of-course there are goals and knowledge based plans of care…but there is NO Performance.

There is a deep need to have a Supernatural Lead as I prepare to meet, walk up to a door, introduce myself and begin to talk through their hospice need.  If it were not for that Supernatural Lead, I would be stumbling and hurting people in their time of grief and surrender.

Know I am grateful for that leading and any feedback that comes my way!


People’s Choice

During End of Life care, there is a drive to allow and to facilitate people in making their own choices for their care.  The challenge is to help them choose realistic and beneficial goals.  Always encouraging safety, comfort and dignity.

The team who helps make these choices include the community of family and friends plus the hospice team.  You would be so surprised to see the networking and outpouring of love for these folks striving to live the rest of their life, by being in control.  In control of what becomes their last “hoorah.”

If you find people who are willing to honor your choices and help you succeed in efforts, you are a blessed and lucky person.  My challenge to you reading this blog entry is to start planning for that time, when you will say, “I really want this or that to happen for me here on earth and it has to happen now.”


Giving Time

One valuable product we all can give to any one is the gift of our time. By sitting, listening and interacting in a conversation much can be accomplished.

I think trust and willingness to partner in end of life care is one of the largest hurdles for our clients and families to come over.  The gift of time can sure be valuable in building that bond.

Sure hope I do this more than once in a while!


Aspiration Pneumonia

Aspiration pneumonia is the medical term when food/fluids or phlegm of any kind go down the wrong pipe!  This is different from a bacterial pneumonia where there is an infection.

At the end-of-life swallowing can be unnatural and difficult.  A person’s weakness and progression of a disease places this normal daily act into a category of just to hard to do.

Here lies one of the most difficult struggles for people to surrender to, not making someone eat/drink.  The emotional wrestling that goes on to let “nature take its course” is profoundly hard.  Yet, protecting a person from aspiration is one of the kindest acts in caring for the dying.


A Personal Note

This season I am walking along side a friend at the end-of-her life.  The combination of being the nurse and friend is letting me “feel” the weight of grief and see the beauty of life.

Once again I get to observe the heroism of humans as we all try to do the best we can to comfort and persevere with a person as they complete their life here on earth.

The tragedy of illness is burdensome.  The hope of our faith is our way of escape…to tolerate the burden.  If we could all be so brave.




All over the world tonight, people are making decisions.  Some of these folks are needing to decide if they will travel for their work or if they should keep their plans for a trip.

Let’s keep these folks in our thoughts…especially as they consider how they may be gone when their loved one crosses into an unresponsive state or may even die.

I think what is on my mind tonight is ceasing your time with people, not living in regrets, wrestling with life requirements.

End-of-life is never a convenience and death is never a respecter of time.  YET, some how it is all under the sovereign care of a supernatural God.

Can we trust Him?



Traveling Nurse

This past week I was asked to travel to NYC with four other women. One of these ladies is at the end of her life here on earth and she was believing it would be a good thing to have a nurse with them.

And so…I was given the amazing and humbling opportunity to take my experience, my skills and my personality along for her vacation.

I wish everyone could see how the other three gals took care of this woman’s needs. It was beautiful to see her allow them to come in to her personal space, into her heart and mind…intamacy at its finest.

This experience was life changing and I thank God for her invitation…and I thank God I said yes to helping her and them out in my ways as a nurse.

© 2014. Copyright Jackie J Bates. Designed by Artillery Media