What holds living beings together? It is life. What breaks us down together? It is death. The inevitable.
End-of-life care is synonymous with hope and living even though knowledge of impending separation. Every journey is a tale, every path is a story, and here are some of life’s simple pleasures at the end of life that I witnessed caring for the elderly through my career as a Geriatric physician…
Many of them will be similar, many of you will have faced yourself. So don’t hold back your tears as you read them. For in every tear there is the memory of living through dying.
We begin our conversations in hospice and palliative care with our very first blog on being in the present.
Here are ways people have lived through the end of their dying journeys
- Asked for their favorite foods
- Preferred to be left alone
- Enjoyed a huge family gathering
- Tell the story of their death, how they were crossing onto the other side
- Planned for an event and made it happen
- Shared family secrets or recipes or stories
- Made peace with God by asking for forgiveness for the sins they committed
- Prepared their family for the life after their death
- Cleared any wishlists
- Wanted their pets or animals or plants by their side
- Gifted something to someone they had wanted to
- Watched old memories and photo albums
- Delivered blessings or said a prayer
- Appreciated everything they had in life with gratitude
- Knew the time and day of their passing
Yes, it is with a heavy heart, I wrote this blog with, for there is much learning in these little cozy things, and there is pure joy in living and thriving rather than surviving at the end of life journey and care. A human’s best dream is to leave this world with fulfillment, it is not the time that counts but the being in the present does. End-of-life care is more than medicine, pain management, and checking vital signs.
We would love to hear your thoughts on this, appreciate it as we say a prayer to all those who have passed away before us in time.