After many years, I still remember a quote by Stephen Covey “Begin With The End In Mind”. This brings up many thoughts in my head and today I wanted to talk to you about the end. Now this was one of the 7 Habits and the idea was to start each day thinking about what you want to accomplish. It’s a vision for success in your life. Well for me it also makes me think of all the successes I want in life and what I want people to know about me and how I want them to treat me in both my personal and business life.
I want to share with you a program I was introduced to by a wonderful educator name Lauren Cates. She specializes in massage and training for oncology and life-limiting illness. If you want to know more about her, check out her blog . She is truly an inspiring person. Anyway in her class we learned about the 5 wishes – Aging With Dignity.
Five Wishes is the first Living Will that talks about your personal, emotional and spiritual needs as well as your medical wishes. Talking about death and dying is a very important conversation to have in your families. Many times people think death only comes to old people, but in reality there is no age limit. We all know it could happen at anytime. Wouldn’t it be nice to know that someone knows exactly how you want to be treated when your time is coming to an end. For life in general I say plan, prepare and be ready. You may not have all the answers now, but begin this journey and watch it evolve.
As soon as I learned of this document, I immediately contacted my family and told them about it. I sat down with two of my sisters and we went through the document page by page as I explained how it worked. I sent a email to my daughter and her husband who had only been married for a year (what he must think of his mother-in-law). I order 25 copies of the document because my wish is to share it with many people face to face and help them complete the 5 wishes.
I sort of got a little obsessed with the this whole dying thing and starting reading articles, books and looking at TED TALKS on the subject. I found this interesting talk that you can view from this post.
I would love to hear your thoughts on this topic and what you have done to prepare yourself and families members for what we know will happen.
Buddhist Roshi Joan Halifax works with people at the last stage of life (in hospice and on death row). She shares what she’s learned about compassion in the face of death and dying, and a deep insight into the nature of empathy.