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Creative coping by Hospice staff during COVID-19

Medical Director's 'Beauty in Adversity' photo & Haiku contests boost morale

Three nurses at Connecticut Hospice in protective gear smile at the camera, one raises arms in cheer.
"COVID's Got Nothing on Us!"

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the Medical Director at Connecticut Hospice, Dr. Joseph Sacco, has kept staff and volunteers well-informed of policy changes, PPE protocols, local and national COVID-19 data, and much more, through a “Daily Update” email.

He has also tested staff frequently for coronavirus to ensure a safe environment for all, and helped to care for non-COVID and COVID-positive patients alike, with his colleagues on the Interdisciplinary Team.

Some of the most appreciated and morale-boosting gestures he has shared with staff in his Daily Updates are the jokes and contests he has inserted at the end of each email.

A recent Haiku contest drew entries from almost every department of this non-profit organization - Nursing, Dietary, IT, Security/Building Services, Arts, Medicine, Social Work, Volunteers, Business office, & Administration.  No subject was off-limits, although the COVID crisis was clearly on many minds. To read the entries, scroll below.

More recently, Dr. Sacco invited Connecticut Hospice staff to submit photographs on the theme “Beauty in Adversity”.

Window visits, at work and at home, were one recurring theme; social isolation featured prominently too. But love, family, humor and resilience were in strong evidence throughout.

We invite you to enjoy some of the submitted photographs, and may you find your own beauty in adversity.

Beauty in Adversity photographs


Got both my gloves on
Ignoring my ear rug burn
Caused by my tight mask

Helping families
Supporting dying loved ones
Through their hardest times

I am leaving earth
Skies are calling me to go
My nurse lifts me up

My nurse blesses my
Last breath as I float away
No pain, only love

There was a big tree
That was in the blue ocean
We love that big tree

We will live to fight
That dreaded Covid nineteen
We will hug again

Our workers need masks
So who are you gonna call
Gonna call Batman

Dress in blue scrubs again
Think about some jewelry. Nah.
Lipstick on a pig.

Wash your hands, be safe
Put on a face mask people
Social distance now!

Patience takes hard work
Humans need much more practice
Smiling helps a lot

Gloomy rainy skies
Give way to sunny weather
I want summer heat

This too shall pass then
We will celebrate our work
Each other our caring

Can’t keep my mouth shut
The filter has big holes
Orange looks good on me

Another day home
Yet one more day staying home
Flattening the curve

Three days in the past
Or three days in the future
Fourteen days from then

alone a woman dies
fever ablaze yet pallid
breath halts then expires

Bud, breeze, buzz and bloom
Harken to our higher self
Faith in renewal

My feet in the sand
A frozen drink in my hand
Please bring on summer

In a world ablaze
We cry for our leaders help
The silence deafens

Touch my cheek softly
Say goodbye without weeping
Heaven awaits me

Fearsome pandemic
Exceptional caring folks
Clouds will part some day

Row, row, row our boat
Covidly down the stream, Life
Is NOT but a Dream

Homeschooling my kid(s).
Home care patients need me, too.
Remember to breathe.

Need toilet paper...
Charmin or Scott, Please?

Trip to London, nope
The high school musical, nope
First time to prom, nope

Zoom, zoom happy hour
One drink tastes good going down
Two, three even more

Further reading

How to write Haiku

History and background of Haiku poetry

Using humor to cope with stress

How nature can restore your health

Ways to maintain your creativity and mental health

Send us your photos and haikus!

Have you seen Beauty in Adversity too?  Capture what that means to you in a photograph and send it to us to share on this page.  Do you love to compose haiku poetry?  All photos and haikus must be your own work, must be copyright free, and you agree that there will be no financial liability to Connecticut Hospice or its employees if your entry is displayed.

Send photos and haikus to Director of Arts Katherine Blossom at  [email protected]

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Admissions may be scheduled seven days a week.
Call our Centralized Intake Department: (203) 315-7540.

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