Published on March 18, 2021
Alive Interview Series Launches with Becca Stevens and Hal Cato of Thistle Farms
Since I joined Alive, people ask me how I can work so closely with death… “Isn’t it sad?” they ask with a wince. “Don’t you get depressed?” While my work often moves me to tears, caring for dying patients and their loved ones is also joyful and profound. It might sound counterintuitive, but our care is about living…right up to the final breath. Facing mortality brings a perspective that helps us live more deeply right now.
As I shared my experience, staff members nodded in understanding; they had already been there. We got to wondering…What if our whole community could experience this awareness? If we could bottle this, how much would it change the way we live today?
In pursuit of answers, I reached out to two local leaders I admire greatly, Reverend Becca Stevens, the founder and president of Thistle Farms and Hal Cato, its CEO (and founder of Hands on Nashville). For more than 20 years, Thistle Farms has lit a pathway of healing and hope for women survivors of trafficking, prostitution, and addiction.
I asked them a couple of questions from our Legacy Conversation cards: how do you inspire others and what do you want to see more of in the world? Both have dedicated themselves to inspiring movements and making great changes in the world, so I wasn’t surprised when they shared wisdom more precious than gold. But I was a little surprised to find myself sniffling. Visit AliveHospice.org/Legacy to watch these interviews, get your own conversation cards, and share your story.
We can all benefit from thinking and talking about where we want to end up, long before we expect to be there. How else will we make it so? As Reverend Becca Stevens told me, “If you want to die in the woods, you better spend a lot of time in the woods.”
– Kimberly Goessele, Alive President/CEO