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End of Life Care

Why Forgiveness Is The Best Gift You Can Give Yourself

Susan R. Dolan | Posted 06.30.2015 | Fifty
Susan R. Dolan

As Jack's mother grew weaker, another little hospice miracle unfolded: it seemed that the weaker Jack's mother became, the sweeter she became. She stopped cursing her son and began to melt the ice she had packed around her heart.

Social Model Hospice Homes May Revolutionize End-of-Life Care in the U.S.

Karen M. Wyatt, M.D. | Posted 06.23.2015 | Impact
Karen M. Wyatt, M.D.

The "social model" hospice home, an uncommon prototype for hospice care, may have great promise for resolving some future end-of-life issues in the U....

6 Caregiver Tips for Turning a Slow Death Into a Slow Dance

Deborah J. Cornwall | Posted 06.18.2015 | Healthy Living
Deborah J. Cornwall

Choices made before a loved one's death don't neutralize the need to grieve for what's being lost, but they can make a huge difference in the pace and depth of caregivers' healing thereafter.

An Unexpected Father's Day Gift

Angelo Volandes | Posted 06.15.2015 | Healthy Living
Angelo Volandes

This is medicine's version of not seeing the forest for the trees. The vascular surgeon and cardiologist could repair my father's body, but how would that benefit him? Could he go on living in a way that was meaningful for him? Instead of searching for the next "fix," we need to know when to use -- or not use -- our growing tool kit of "fixes."

What's Funny About Dying?

Susan R. Dolan | Posted 05.11.2015 | Fifty
Susan R. Dolan

Many dying patients cling to a zest for life and a sense of humor that endear them to hospice workers.

Advance Directives 2.0

Angelo Volandes | Posted 06.27.2015 | Healthy Living
Angelo Volandes

Most of the time, patients have named someone with whom they have not discussed their health care wishes. I often find myself talking about decisions with a son or daughter who never had a conversation with their parents about what they wanted.

What One Woman Learned After Caring For Her Husband Through Lung Cancer

Posted 04.07.2015 | Healthy Living

In 2005, Laura and her husband Tim opened a bakery in Ypsilanti, Michigan, fulfilling a lifelong goal of Tim's. In July 2012, Tim was diagnosed with s...

The 2 Truths I've Learned After Working Decades In Hospice

Susan R. Dolan | Posted 05.23.2015 | Fifty
Susan R. Dolan

After spending hours at the bedside of my precious Grandma Daisy, I stepped out of her room to make a brief telephone call. At that moment, Grandma Daisy died. When I began working in hospice, I witnessed similar experiences.

Falling in Love With the Elderly and Rediscovering Our Purpose

Tajci Cameron | Posted 05.10.2015 | Healthy Living
Tajci Cameron

What does waking up to the life we are created to live have to do with falling in love with the elderly? On first thought, not so much. On second, e...

Why One Woman With Lung Cancer Photographed Herself Every Day For A Year

The Huffington Post | Erin Schumaker | Posted 02.24.2015 | Healthy Living

In 2013, Jennifer Glass was diagnosed with stage IIIB lung cancer. To help document her life, she took a photo every day and then, in March 2014, she ...

How to Write an Ethical Will: A Love Letter to Future Generations

Susan R. Dolan | Posted 04.19.2015 | Fifty
Susan R. Dolan

An ethical will is used to pass on personal values, beliefs, blessings, and advice to future generations. It is a way to tell stories and share your memories.

4 Powerful Lessons About Life I Learned As A Hospice Worker

Dawn Q Landau | Posted 04.12.2015 | Fifty
Dawn Q Landau

As a Hospice volunteer, I spend every Tuesday with people who are dying. I cook their meals; hold their hands; read to them; I sing and I sit quietly. I tell them stories and I listen to theirs. I wipe their foreheads, when fever or illness makes them sweat.

Dead of Winter -- End of Life With Lightness

Gerit Quealy | Posted 04.07.2015 | Healthy Living
Gerit Quealy

So, violent death we're used to... but natural death? Shhh, don't talk about that. Don't acknowledge it. Try to prevent it. Outlive it, outrun it, outsmart it. Stick a tube or a wire or a needle into it stat!

Dying: A Human Touch

Mindy Utay | Posted 03.30.2015 | Healthy Living
Mindy Utay

I was fortunate that nature allowed me the chance to give Phoebe a peaceful death, and that has brought me peace in return. But I wonder about the human deaths that are coming, my own and those of the people I love. Will I have the grace to be there for them at their final breath?

Final Arrangements Should Be Made Sooner Rather Than Later

Marie Marley | Posted 01.27.2015 | Fifty
Marie Marley

No one wants to make arrangements for the death of a terminally ill friend or family member. It's painful to think about any loved one's eventual passing, but it's important to make the arrangements sooner rather than later. In fact, it's best to do it when you first learn your loved one has a terminal diagnosis. Why?

Pass the Peas and Give Me Your Keys: Having 'That' Conversation

Susan R. Dolan | Posted 01.25.2015 | Fifty
Susan R. Dolan

"You've always been there for us, Dad. Now I need your help. I'd rather that we have these conversations now, in the comfort of your living room, rather than at two o'clock in the morning in the emergency room."

Amanda Gutterman

Why We Need To Start Talking About Death Again

HuffingtonPost.com | Amanda Gutterman | Posted 11.04.2014 | Books

Whether you call it “assisted suicide” or “death with dignity,” stories about people choosing to die on their own terms have been making the n...

Will God Condemn Brittany Maynard for Ending Her Life?

Rabbi Evan Moffic | Posted 01.03.2015 | Religion
Rabbi Evan Moffic

Jewish tradition has a nuanced approach to this challenge. Thoughtful rabbis and scholars disagree. What is clear, however, is the various factors that matter in making the decision.

5 Things Brittany Maynard's Example Teaches Us About Death And Dying

Religion News Service | Cathy Lynn Grossman | Posted 11.03.2014 | Religion

UPDATE: Brittany Maynard died on Saturday at the age of 29. "Goodbye to all my dear friends and family that I love," she wrote in a Facebook post, ...

When the Bad News Comes, Be There and Remain Faithful

Martha Nelson | Posted 12.25.2014 | Fifty
Martha Nelson

This is the final part of a four-part series on death, and life, and decisions we face going forward into our final twenty or so years. (For the first...

Letting Someone You Love Die: The Irony Behind a Living Will

Dr. Candi K. Cann | Posted 12.08.2014 | Healthy Living
Dr. Candi K. Cann

In the end, living wills are a gift -- to yourself and to your family. Because even though I wanted more than anything to leave my mother on life support, I knew that by taking her off of it, I was supporting her vision of life, and helping her control how she died.

Is 75 the Perfect Age to Die?

Rabbi Evan Moffic | Posted 12.07.2014 | Religion
Rabbi Evan Moffic

Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, the well-known bioethicist and brother of the mayor of my town, argued recently in an essay in the Atlantic Monthly that 75 is the perfect age to die. After that, he said, most people have little to contribute to society and are a burden rather than a benefit. I can think of few less-Jewish ideas than this. It is not only heartless but wrong.

Americans Don't Plan on Dying

Paul Spector, M.D. | Posted 12.03.2014 | Healthy Living
Paul Spector, M.D.

Many people who do not want to die in an intensive care unit, intubated, on a respirator, pierced by a web of intravenous lines are dying this way. For these individuals, this is worse than death. We cannot prevent death, but we can dictate how we want to be cared for at the end of our lives.

Palliative Care or Hospice? It's Not About Giving Up

Jeanne Dennis | Posted 11.30.2014 | Healthy Living
Jeanne Dennis

Mrs. G., a woman in her 50s, had been receiving disease-directed care for her breast cancer, but her condition reached a point where the treatment was...

Protecting Herself From Hero Doctors

Jessica Nutik Zitter, MD, MPH | Posted 11.24.2014 | Healthy Living
Jessica Nutik Zitter, MD, MPH

"You want to get a Do Not Resuscitate tattoo on your chest?" I asked, as one might say to a friend whose goal was to lose 50 pounds. You'd support it, but you knew it would never happen. "No, I have one," she said quietly, pulling her shirt aside modestly to show the skin over her heart muscle. I stared at it unbelieving.