Yes, advance directives are about when you are seriously ill or at end of life, but you shouldn’t wait until then. You should have an advance directive (or at least appointed a healthcare proxy) long before that just in case. This way, your loved ones know the care you want and you have someone you love speaking for you when you cannot.
TWO: AN ADVANCE DIRECTIVE CHANGES AS YOU CHANGE
An advance directive form isn’t something you complete and then leave dormant for years. It is, in a sense, organic and living. It evolves, as you grow older, expressing something different from what was stated in its original form. That’s why an ongoing conversation with family is important. What care you’d want at thirty is different from what you’d want at sixty or eighty.
THREE: AN ADVANCE MEDICAL DIRECTIVE DOES NOT MEAN “DO NOT TREAT”.
It means being treated the way you want.
Yes, this post probably oversimplifies all the paperwork and choices around dying care wishes but my hope is it empowers you to create an advance care plan that’s about you and how you want to live life to its end.
You can lead by example. A brother talking to a sister, an adult child to a parent, parents to their children, a husband to his wife, friends with friends.
Just say yes. Have the conversation and a plan about how you wish to die and then….well then, we begin a person at a time to make the taboo around not talking about dying a preexisting paradigm.Tags: ACP Decisions, Advance Care Plan, Advance Directive, Dying care, End of Life