The film Grace + Gratitude documents the end-of-life journey of Sarah Livesey, who died at age 46 in the Center for Comfort Care & Healing. Two years after her death, Sarah’s light, boundless love, and beautiful way of being are still very much alive.
I was lucky to meet Sarah when we were in 8th grade. Years later, I had the incredible blessing of caring for my dear friend in her final eight weeks of life on this earth.
Today, February 8, 2021 marks the two-year anniversary of Sarah’s death and on this bittersweet day, I continue to honor her sacred being, her love and laughter and her friendship.
Sarah taught us “very seasoned hospice healers” at Regional Hospice a uniquely different way of dying and living. She spent eight weeks in our care at the Center for Comfort Care & Healing and we all felt her presence was a gift.
There was lots of laughter, yoga, prayers, chanting, music, singing, great food, the smell of lilies, the hugs with Toby the cat who graced us with his furry cuddles, and Sarah’s radiant smile that would light up a room and never faded. Her blue eyes glistened with expression, always telling us exactly what she wanted us to know.
I am especially humbled by the evening Sarah and I sat with her mom and she told me she wanted her very special piece of art from the film Grace + Gratitude to live in the Center. She wanted it to be an inspiration to all our patients and families, to give them strength that they could draw upon when it was needed.
This beautiful and colorful piece of art will hang in the North Star, our forthcoming children’s hospice wing, and it will bring Sarah’s strength, compassion, resilience and love to all who move through this sacred space.
Sarah’s art will always be a reminder of the lessons she taught us. It is about celebrating her life, living every day with meaning and purpose, and never losing sight of the important work we all can do on this earth.
Thank you, Sarah, for teaching us once again how a peaceful, beautiful life and parting can look.
And thank you too to all the Regional Hospice staff who lovingly cared for Sarah. You all gave so much of yourselves and because of that, Sarah was able to leave this world with such grace. Thank you for being a part of her journey, and for connecting with all our patients and their families with love, compassion, and courage.
Cynthia Emiry Roy
President & CEO, Regional Hospice