Dave Bucheit (pictured above), one of our spiritual care partner volunteers at Bon Secours St. Francis Medical Center, recently comforted a new mother. She was visibly distressed when he saw her enter the hospital and appeared to need support.
The wound from her recent C-section had become infected, which is why she returned to the hospital. She was separated from her new baby, who was being cared for at home by her husband, which was the most difficult part for her.
Dave sat with her and listened as she described her anguish and frustration. Dave created a safe place for her to share and release her feelings. He gently guided her to consider if anything good might come of this rightfully upsetting experience. The new mother realized that she would get a lot of rest in the hospital and would be better able to take care of her family when she returned home, than if she were still at home.
The spiritual care partners volunteer program was developed by Chaplain Robert Shenk, M.Div, BCC. These volunteers round on patient floors and provide a listening ear, as well as spiritual and emotional support, to those who want this service. These patients are identified by the chaplain at their respective hospital.
The first class of spiritual care partners formed during the fall of 2013. Spiritual care partners receive 60 hours of training by our spiritual care department and also take part in quarterly continuing education classes.
With the new mother’s situation, Dave was able help her to reframe her situation through a lens of humility and gratitude, while still honoring the reality of her separation anxiety. She began to focus on getting rest and looking forward to reuniting with her baby very soon.
Dave adds that the new mother was in a totally different frame of mind when he took his leave, compared to when he first came across her path.
Learn about all the volunteer services we have available at Bon Secours.