the caregiver’s promise (audio 6:03)

Earlier this evening, I was the speaker at the Volunteer Appreciation
Dinner for a Hospice organization in my region, and I read my
late 20th-century piece, “The Caregiver’s Promise.”

It felt good rolling off my tongue, so I decided to record it
(regular voice, no Echoes of the Deep Void) for all of you out there
who regularly bring care, comfort, peace, love, and dignity
to those among us who need it most.

“Tell them they’re not angels!” a small voice told me
in the days leading up to my presentation.
We think of these folks as angels, knowing no other words
that encompass the qualities of unlimited compassion,
patience, tenderness and selflessness that many caregivers embody.

Alas, though possessing angelic qualities,
caregivers are still human, with human limitations and frailties,
and need be vigilant to remain centered, balanced, and
sufficiently replenished to offer up gifts that benefit all
(including themselves) in the highest.
This reading is in honor of caregivers everywhere.

Here is the original text as it was posted in October 2008.

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