Confirming My Call

Saturday morning, I was planning to sell tickets for the Master Chorale performance that evening, and then attend the event. Two phone calls later that day changed my plans.

First, a call came in from two members of our congregations, friends of mine, who reported that they had been in a car crash. Were they injured? Just bumps and bruises, the husband said. Did they need a ride home. No, they were home now, but their car was totaled. Could I pick up prescriptions for them from the pharmacy? Absolutely. I could do that before I needed to show up to sell tickets.

Then came the second call, from the hospice organization I work for. One of the wonderful women I had been seeing before she was moved to Home Health, was now in her daughter’s home and near death. Could I come out and support the family soon, like tonight?

I made a quick call to line up someone to sell tickets in my place, ran to the pharmacy and to my friends’ house to deliver prescriptions, and at 5:45 I was on the road to Covina, at least and hour and a half away. I stopped briefly at Starbucks for a sandwich and a warm drink, and kept driving. GPS took me straight to the house.

There were three generations of family there supporting the patient, along with staff from the agency. I immediately felt like I was in the right place at the right time, going over and greeting the woman in her hospital bed. I don’t know if she recognized me or even heard me, but the family was so relieved to have me there. We gathered lavender oil to do an anointing and a blessing (this chaplain’s version of Last Rites, as I am not a practicing Catholic). We prayed as a group around the bed. Then each person present came to the head of the bed to deliver a personal message. There was so much love in that room, and so many blessings.

I was sent on my way with tamales and heartfelt thanks. The drive home was divided by a stop at one son’s house to say hi. It turned out that son #2 had stopped by as well, and we got some lovely photos of the three of us. I drove the rest of the way home (up the mountain) surrounded by pine trees, shining stars and a new moon.

Thank you, Spirit, for reminding me why I do what I do.

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