At the beginning of each New Year I notice my tendency to cling to the past. One of the best role models for discerning what to hold onto and what to release are Hospice patients. With precious few days left, they almost always focus on the individuals who they love and bring meaning to their life. The rest is forgotten.

In tribute to the courage and strength of the patients I have cared for these last 7 years, I am starting a new adventure. I am moving from the intimacy of bedside care to another passion of mine – building public awareness of end of life issues through education. I have joined an organization which is a leader in dealing with the many aspects of palliative care while providing Hospice care to those in need. It is a bold new step and I look forward to the challenge.

In keeping with the theme of courage and strength I have included in this month’s postings an excellent article – “How to Talk About Death”: How to begin the difficult conversation about death with your loved ones. My second post pays homage to a memorable patient of mine, Mel, who at the age of 22 brought wisdom, courage and humor to those close to him during his final days.

Be on the lookout for my new e-book which will be available for download soon. It features patient stories and explores lessons learned along the way.

Best adventures and journeys to you all in 2013!