Here's a scary word for you.
Like most folks, my understanding of that term has alway been a trifle gloomy.
Then I found out something else.
It's not, really.
According to the free Merriman-Webster dictionary, it can be defined several different ways.
One, "A place that provides care for people who are dying."
Another, "A facility or program designed to provide a caring environment for meeting the physical and emotional needs of the terminally ill,"
But there's another, older definition of the term that really hits the mark for me:
"A place where travelers can stay."
Now we're talking.
Because, as far as I'm concerned, life, more than anything else, is a journey.
When the clinical trial I made a run at in an effort to sideline the mysterious, aggressive cancer I've battled for the past year or so failed, there were different roads to take.
I could have resumed the chemotherapy treatment I had been undergoing, though its effectiveness had begun to wain. I could have tried a different version of chemo, but with little hope that it would do much more than set me up with a whole new range of treatment side effects.
Or I could do what I have now chosen to do: Undergo a program of aggressive palliative care that will hopefully work to ease some of effects of the disease itself, while giving me the best possible quality of life.
They call it hospice.
And, yes, I call it life.
And the fact is, life--and living--is what it's all about.
My decision has nothing to do with giving up.
Rather, it has everything to do with taking the road that has always been the one path for me.
A road that is lined, from start to finish, with love, with faith, with truth, and with hope.
I'll see you along the way.