Planning for the end of life can be very liberating and uplifting, because it frees one from worry, and you know you are doing your family and friends the favor of taking care of you and remembering you the way you want.
This message comes across clearly in a newly released beautiful photo journal book by my smart and lovely friend Rita Foley: SHOW UP FOR LIFE EACH DAY…Living with Cancer
Here is an excerpt from her book on the benefits of planning:
“It is hard to think of one’s death, but planning for it is liberating. I’ve heard stories of children arguing over who among them was going to give the eulogy or a particular reading. The last thing one wants is to have his or her children falling away from one another after the parent is gone. Planning can mitigate that.
Get your house in order. By all means, make sure you have a will, a Healthcare Proxy, and any specific directives.
Planning is part of our everyday life in both work and in our personal affairs. Many of us are used to doing contingency planning in work. Do the same with end-of-life planning. I put my objective, get-it-done, doer hat on when I planned for my end of life. When using the logical side of my brain, my emotional side is put to rest. I find it easy to talk about this stage to others when I can access that analytical side of me.
In the past year, I updated my will, completed my Healthcare Proxy, Power of Attorney, and end-or-life directives. I have made my application to the only hospital in my area that will come and take my body for medical research immediately. No waiting for the police to certify the death. My ashes will be returned to my family a year later. I have specified where I would like my ashes to be spread—in special woods and areas where I will continue to be part of nature and of this earth.
No mourning when I go. I want a party—a big one. I have led a very full and wonderful life. So I have picked out where I want my memorial celebration to take place. I have a list of desired speakers from each stage of my life. I expect them to be funny and take the mickey out of me (a lovely old Irish phrase we used growing up, meaning make fun of). I have requested that a particular jazz choir sing at the service, and I also want salsa and uplifting dance music to be played. I love to dance.
With good planning, my load is lessened and I will be dancing out of the current life.
But not yet!”
Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in ordering a copy of this wonderful book.
Have you started making your plans?