Our Ohio’s Hospice affiliate, Hospice of Central Ohio, has invited staff members and others to share their memories of the hospice mission as part of their 35th Anniversary observance.
My name is Cindy Simons and I have worked at Hospice of Central Ohio for 23 years.
I am a clinical nurse specialist but when I started at Hospice I was an RN who came from Licking Memorial Hospital ICU unit. I answered an ad in the Advocate for an on-call nurse position as my children were in dance competition and they were dancing in Disney World that summer. I needed some extra money and expected to work a couple nights a week for Hospice and continue to work my ICU job.
The nurses who worked for Hospice were Sue Grube, Ruth Bevier and Cindy Kendrick. Mary Morman was our supervisor. Ruth took me with her a couple of times and “showed me the ropes”. There was one social worker and one chaplain. Peggy Streby was secretary to the CEO, then Jim Moss. After a few nights of working the on call position I loved it!
Patients and families were so appreciative of the help, they welcomed me into their homes and filled my heart with a love of my profession that I had never felt before. This was what I was meant to do.
As I continued working at Licking Memorial and Hospice I decided that I was going to make a change. I completed my 15 years at Licking Memorial in ICU a year after starting with Hospice and left that position. That is when I started full time at Hospice, in the on call position. I have never regretted that change. It was one of the best things I have ever done – answered an ad in the paper!!
The patients and families are not the only reason I love Hospice of Central Ohio. The people I have worked with over the years have been some of the most compassionate, loving and kind people that you could ever meet. We care about each other. We care about each other’s families. When I was working on call I was shown such appreciation for the job I was doing by my coworkers. That doesn’t happen everywhere. That didn’t happen at my previous job. Hospice is a special group of people working with one goal – taking care of our precious patients and families. I’m so glad we also take care of each other. Over the years I have said good-bye and welcome to some wonderful people. I have grown. I went on to complete my master’s degree and helped plan the Palliative Care program. I am proud of this program as we can now take care of more deserving people in our community. We can help more patients and families get through their difficult times.
Again I am doing exactly what I wanted to do when I became a nurse. I am making a difference in peoples’ lives and helping to make their burdens lighter. I am working with some very special people and am so appreciative of the support by administration to continue this valuable program. I hope to retire from Hospice of Central Ohio a few years from now. Until then I will continue to provide the best, compassionate care I can and to be a role model and mentor for our current and future staff. And I will be able to say that my career was what I dreamed of – fulfilling and successful.