I called up the The Hospice of Florida Suncoast to inquire about their latest training program to volunteer as Patient & Family Care volunteer 3 months back and they told me 4 hours of general training to learn about the organization, 12 hours of training for Patient and Family Care and 4 hours of training for “Transition”. My mind told me why would someone needs to spend 20 hours to learn how to volunteer? That training is invaluable. They taught us how to wear and remove the glove and gown and how to wash our hands before and after getting into contact with a patient. I didn’t even know that World Health Organization has set standards for clean environment for patient care and this organization is in compliant with their standards. They did a background screening, vaccinated me for Tuberculosis and eventually when they issued a badge for me, I felt as though I finished my doctorate. I didn’t do anything with that training for good 3 months until I heard the spiritual speaker last week. He indicated that if I need to improve my self-respect, I need to constantly work on opportunities to help those in need. The first thing that came to my mind was about my Patient Care training. The next day, I met with the Volunteer Coordinator and sought a meeting with her. She accepted my request and walked me through the care center. At the end of the meeting, she asked me to execute a few documents and asked when I could start volunteering. When I said immediately, she requested me to shadow two interesting volunteers last Friday and next Friday from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. and then work every Saturday from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Last Friday, I reported promptly at 5 p.m. and I was given a warm welcome by these two volunteers Mr. B and Mrs. M. One was 78 years old and the other was 77 years old and both have been volunteering every week for the past 10 years since the start of the care center in that location. When inquired further, I learned Mr. B prefers to volunteer as much as possible and like to give company for terminally ill patients to make a big difference in their transition. Mrs. M walked me through the daily routine for those 3 hours volunteering, what kind of emergencies could come in, showed me the button to press if there is threat to the care center or people inside the care center, how the order for breakfast, lunch and dinner are taken the previous day for the kitchen to prepare the next day, where to pin the orders in the kitchen, How to refill coffee cups, cookies, where the blankets are located if a family member prefers to stay overnight with their loved ones, how wheel chairs and other supplies are covered in plastic wrappers to indicate that they are sanitized and ready to use, where to take the patients if they like to feel fresh air, what I need to do if a patient wants to smoke, the location of the nurse station, if requested what I need to do to sit with a transitioning patient, if there are not loved ones near them, etc. When I walked around the care center, I noticed some rooms are with very little light and soothing music indicating that those patients are transitioning. I was told most don’t like to eat and will be constantly in illusions seeing live and dead people alternatively and it is hard for them to differentiate which one is real and which one is illusion. They rarely talk and even if they do, it is difficult to understand what they are communicating unless we listen carefully. The co-volunteers training me emphasized how important it is to show love and compassion and always be smiling. Most importantly, they told me to keep my spirit very high understanding that transitioning is part of life. After the first 3 hours of shadowing, I realized these 3 hours are going to be most well spent time every week. Equipped well with the training about how terminally ill patients’ transition, what type of changes happen in their skin color, conversations, in their breathing, in their eating habits, in their back and forth between readiness to transition Vs wanting help from a live person to help them go to an unknown place. Even though it is considered a selfless service, I feel deep inside my mind, I have a few selfish motivations. One is to make me feel good by serving another soul to compensate for not being their next to my mother during her transition and second to make my own transition as easy as possible knowing death is part of living.