caring, end of life, nurses, Parse



  1. Thornburg, Patricia PhD, RN, PCNS-BC
  2. Schim, Stephanie Myers PhD, RN, CNS-BC
  3. Paige, Virginia MSN, RN
  4. Grubaugh, Kaye MSN, RN


The literature is inundated with information on caring, yet missing is a clear understanding of what caring means to people and, in particular, what caring means to nurses who work with people who are dying. The 11 nurses in this study, guided by the Parse method, described what the experience of caring while letting go meant to them. Structural integration of caring while letting go emerged as a pleasing-disheartening tug-of-war, through expressing-being still while shifting views are emerging. Findings from the study may resonate with nurses giving end-of-life care, as well as support the belief that the experience of caring can be paradoxical in nature.