End of Life Decisions

Every once in awhile, a severe illness rears its ugly head.  And you are suddenly faced with a “what if” situation.

I experienced such a case last week when my husband was rushed to the emergency room with pneumonia, sepsis, and a mild heart attack.  As usual, they asked for a directive…which we always have at the ready.

Now that things have settled down and my husband is slowly getting back to normal, I wanted to share some thoughts.

You cannot avoid the subject.  Sooner or later you die.  Be prepared.  My parents, always at the ready, made things easy for me by taking out insurance for their burial, funeral, and added expenses such as a gravestone and money for flying the family across the country for the services.  They had written out in detail their wishes for a memorial service, and specified no heroics in life-saving procedures if there was no hope.

When my Dad died, I made one phone call.  When my mom died, I made another.  And everything was done.

My husband and I have done that for our children.  It’s not an easy family discussion…don’t do it over dinner…as one could lose one’s appetite.  But have the conversation with the family.  It was a close call last week.  But should the worst have happened, one phone call would have taken care of everything.

In life, always be prepared for certainties; be flexible with uncertainties; and live each day to the max!

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