Not grim and not somber, this category wades into matters of death and dying with some observations about the big picture and details that sometimes don’t see the light of day!  Full of years, readers and viewers will find this category a good place to begin conversations and redeem what might otherwise seem to be an easily avoided part of life.


Memories that never die

A few months ago, Liz, one of my former co-workers, died at a young age. This was one of those cases where “too soon for her to die” was true—an effervescent woman still perking along and inspiring others wherever she went. My initial grieving was compounded by the sadness of not having kept in touch over the years—lots of geographical distance. So I was not able to be part of the comfortingMORE...

Fragile lives

Every so often, I am struck by how fragile our lives can be. So many of life’s difficult times begin with a startling moment that changes everything. With sometimes little warning, the exquisitely intricate facets of daily living can disappear suddenly. Lines that have bound us tightly to others fray and snap. Normal health dissipates in the face of sobering test results. An accident snuffs outMORE...

“Nobody knows the trouble I’ve seen”

First it was Ken who entered hospice. Then Kent. And just yesterday, the news came that Bill has been placed under the care of a local hospice program. In each case, this later stage in personal and medical care has followed years of the quiet agonies that come when dealing with disease. What has struck me in each of these cases is how family members have worked out of sight of most of ourMORE...


At the edge of foodie-culture is the practice of “dumpster-diving.” What practitioners sensibly advocate is an enlightened approach to finding food that has been needlessly discarded, some of it into dumpsters. What’s fully rational about this idea: There is hope and nourishment in what’s at first-glance NOT a place to find useful sustenance. I think there’s a partial connection here to theMORE...

The zeitgeist of a hospital visit

One of the special privileges of older adult years is visiting folks in the hospital. Like funerals or memorial services, these visits can be exquisite times of spiritual depth—occurring at just the right “god-moment”—that might be hard to capture in words. Let me tell you about a recent hospital visit that might match similar experiences in your life. Perhaps these thoughts might help youMORE...

The end is near II

The entries for yesterday and today look at the idea of “endings”, and how we might react to that idea as it plays out in our lives. Today: How endings effect my spirit. As I move through my seventh decade of life I’m more and more intrigued how ending-ideas worm their way into my thoughts. The current seasons of the calendar and liturgical years nudge me to make sense of these matters. Not justMORE...

The end is near I

The entries for today and tomorrow look at the concept of “endings”, and how we might react to that idea as it plays out in our lives. Today: Some concept exploration…. The title above, evocative of scores of cartoons, is also familiar emotional territory for older adults. Endings of any kind may seem to gather like lifespan sentries, silently watching as we move toward conclusive events andMORE...

Your lifework

  If you’ve followed this blog series for awhile, you’ve seen my frequent use of the term, “lifework.” It’s an important concept to me, with roots and tendrils that extend into my sense of self. Dictionary definitions suggest connections to the scope of one’s life, and the work that is accomplished during its duration. Knowing your lifework requires a broad perspective about your essentialMORE...

Between ability and fragility

Eventually all of us will cross the line between physical/mental capability and fragility. During this part of life’s journey, the demarcation point might be broad and relatively invisible—a gradual deterioration of strength or the gradual redevelopment of cancer. This boundary could also be thin but highly visible—a stroke or broken hip. In either case, we will reckon with the transition, makingMORE...

Exit interviews?

Along my career path, I’ve participated in several exit interviews—final conversations with my bosses about any number of matters regarding my past and future work. With my supervisor, I could review the final details of my separation; learn important information that might be useful for the next steps in my life and receive affirmations about my past service along with best wishes for my futureMORE...


Bob Sitze

BOB SITZE has filled the many years of his lifework in diverse settings around the United States. His calling has included careers as a teacher/principal, church musician, writer/author, denominational executive staff member and meat worker. Bob lives in Wheaton, IL.

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