Thursday, March 19, 2009

How do you want to die?

What a harsh, harsh question. Nobody likes to think of their own mortality. Everyone talks a lot about what they want to accomplish while they're living, and what's waiting for them after they're gone. No one wants to ponder the transition between the two.

However, recent events have started a strange train of thought in my head. I've realized how important--and how kind-- it is to think of these things WAY before any decisions must be made in the heat of the moment.

There are no cut-and-dry answers here. It all comes down to your wishes. Don't just leave it to chance that your loved ones would make the same decisions you would, should they ever have to choose for you.

Talk to them, often. Make them clear about what your wishes are about things like ventilators, artificial nutrition, when (and when NOT) to resuscitate. This is your life, and they're your decisions to make. Please make them, and make them legal.

No child wants to be left with the reality that they made the 'dying decision' in a parent's life. It's not fair to anyone.

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