Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Death IS Inevitable

A woman I 'know' from Twitter is going through the rapid decline of her father.  He is, I believe, dying from cancer.  And she isn't taking this very well.  The other day, she tweeted this:

"My dad is dying. He is being moved from the ICU to a Hospice House. We have no say in the matter. Devastated. :'-( "

And a few days later, she tweeted this:

"Hospice House = death chamber. My dad is being legally "murdered" by my step mother. Nothing I can do. Love him so much. Sobbing."

As the only connection this woman and I have is the Red Wings, I don't know what is going on in her personal life.  I assume she isn't very close with her stepmother and isn't very happy with the decision to place her father in hospice care.  I know that watching a loved one die is not easy, but I was never under the impression that hospice care was 'legal murder.'  I always thought that hospice was there to provide a more dignified way to leave this life, but I have not been in the situation and I could very well be wrong.

Rather than fixate on this woman's story, I am using it as a springboard for this post.  And I will talk about death.

As the title says, death IS inevitable--we all have to go through it.  And as I get older, I find that I really don't fear death like I did when I was younger.  Now, I don't particularly WANT to die, but I'm not afraid to die either.  I believe my change in how I feel has a lot to do with my faith:  I know where I will go when I leave this world--and I know it will be a better place.  My one big fear is the ACT of dying--I'm so afraid I will die a painful death.  I don't do pain very well, at all.  And that is why I always thought that hospice was such a good thing--that they help a person to, not only die with dignity, but to lessen the pain of dying.  Believe me, if I am dying while in a great amount of pain, I WILL insist on enormous amounts of pain meds to get me through the pain.  And that is why I have questions about my Twitter acquaintance:  I don't understand what her problem is, other than not getting along with her stepmother.  Death is a sad, sad thing, but is it actually worse than seeing a loved one suffer?  While I have seen MANY family members pass on, none have been closer than aunts, uncles, etc.  I don't know how I would feel if my husband or one of my children were in a bad way, whether I would want them to 'be out of their misery,' or not.  And I certainly hope that I never am put in the position where I have to watch one of them die.


meleah rebeccah said...

"Hospice was there to provide a more dignified way to leave this life."

that IS what they are there for. And they did a wonderful job with my Grandfather Ernie and my Grandmother Manga.

Im not afraid of dying, Im just afraid of dying painfully. Like in a fire, or drowning, or in a home invasion.

But you already know that!

kristi noser said...

When I worked at the hospital, one of the sections I worked was the hospice unit. Believe me, the nurses there have compassion plus and make every effort to make the patient's last days comfortable and as painless as possible. I think this lady has so much pain at her father dying (understandably so) she is lashing out (also understandable). I feel so badly for her.

cmk said...

I agree that this woman is just lashing out in her pain. I'm hoping that, in the years to come, she will see what a true blessing hospice care was for her dad.

As she continues to give brief updates, it becomes more and more apparent that her problems right now are with her stepmother. She is so angry at the woman that she can't think clearly. Along with her grief, it is understandable. I'm really hoping that she won't say/do anything at this time that she will regret later. I too feel badly for her.