You heard from me and my passion to assist at end of life. To sit with you as you face your last days. To offer assistance to your family and caregivers as they circle your bed or recliner wondering what to do next. They anxiously hold their breath when your breath slows down. Do you hear them? They might be whispering so they don’t disturb you, or maybe they are talking about the every day stuff because they think you don’t hear them. Maybe they are finally telling you they are sorry, or that you are forgiven/loved/missed.
What about you? Do you have a plan? Have you told your friends and family what they need to know? What is important to you? Have you spent time getting to know ‘you’ and what your relationship priorities are at end of life?
Ira Byock, M.D. wrote a wonderful book, The Four Things That Matter Most – A Book About Living. Dr. Byock speaks from his world as a palliative care physician and advocate for better end of life care. He shares four simple (but don’t confuse with ‘easy’) and powerful phrases we should all consider.
“Please forgive me.” “I forgive you.” “Thank you.” “I love you.”
Spend some time getting to know ‘you’ and who needs to hear these words. Yes, they are simple statements, and only 2-3 words each, but they carry enormous power for healing.
Knowing our days are numbered can create an urgency to say these words to our loved ones. Why do we wait? Wouldn’t it be freeing to say them now, so everyone can move forward without that heavy burden?
Take time to get to know you. What part of your heart remains broken because of a misunderstanding? What grudge is so old you cannot even remember how it started? Whose feelings did you hurt years ago? Maybe you aren’t comfortable saying ‘I love you’, but your words might work magic in your loved ones’ heart.
Take time to get to know you. Think about those four things….