The Curious Autodidact

March 22, 2015

Making Friends with Death, Start Today

Filed under: end of life,media related,social justice,women heroes — Honilima @ 12:09 pm

Image result for barbara coombs lee

At the National Compassion and Choices conference in Chicago, Barbara Coombs Lee stated powerfully that, “Making friends with death leads you to a more meaningful life”

To normalize death in our culture would be a step in the right direction to allow us more decent death choices. Nationally we are being crushed by the costs of medical care at the end of life as detailed by this article in the WSJ “The Crushing Cost of Care.”

It has been said that many are replacing a fear of death with a fear of not dying—being stuck in that place between life and death and dying surrounded by machines and strangers.

Michael Wolf’s “Life Worth Ending” in the New York Magazine is a brave piece about his mother. When you read it you realize what a step forward we have taken for a mainstream magazine to feature such a candid article on this end of life topic. We have many more steps to take on this journey.

If you have not taken time to create your very own Advanced Directive, to be certain your end of life choices are made clear, for all to understand, Compassion and Choices has free forms available on-line for all fifty states. Filling out the form is a great way to begin the conversation but talking to your loved ones about this document and making sure it is on file with your doctor is also wise. Having your feelings about medical interventions in serious situations is a marvelous gift to give your family and loved ones.

Barbara Coombs Lee has also written a powerful article called “If Wishes Were Fishes” worth reading too as a cautionary tale about using the Five Wishes document to state your end of life wishes.

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