With the Thanksgiving holiday drawing near, I am thankful to you, and to all my faithful readers, for allowing me to keep in touch with you about how to start conversations on serious topics most folks would rather avoid.
As Americans gather with their families for a Thanksgiving holiday weekend, it’s an opportune time to have those conversations that will enable you to act with courage, care and knowledge when a medical crisis affects a loved one. Do you know how the people closest to you would answer these questions?
- On a scale of 1 to 5, where do you fall on this continuum? (1 being “Let me die in my own bed, without any medical intervention,” 5 being “Don’t give up on me no matter what, try any proven and unproven intervention possible”)
- If there were a choice, would you prefer to die at home or in a hospital?
- Could a loved one correctly describe how you’d like to be treated in the case of a terminal illness?
- Is there someone you trust whom you’ve appointed to advocate on your behalf when the time is near?
- Have you completed any of the following: written a living will, appointed a healthcare power of attorney, or completed an advance directive?
These questions come from The One Slide Project of the nonprofit organization Engage With Grace. Alexandra Drane, co-founder of Engage With Grace, is my guest on the radio show this Wednesday. Since so many people travel on Wednesday, we prerecorded the show and you can download the podcast now.
Feel free to download The One Slide Project five questions to discuss this weekend. It’s better to talk about these topics while relaxing over some pumpkin pie than while sitting on the edge of a plastic chair in the emergency room.
Wishing you much love and laughter – and of course, live long and prosper!
Top Tips from Last Week’s Show
Green burial, funeral resource usage and cremation were the topics of discussion on last week’s radio show with Mary Woodsen, Research Director of the Green Burial Council. A few tips from that conversation:
- The usage of hardwoods and steel have declined since Woodsen first compiled usage figures in 2002.
- The rate of cremation has shot up dramatically since that time – about 12% between 2007 and 2012.
- If you have dental fillings, the mercury in those fillings goes into the atmosphere during cremation.
- Cremation of an average sized person generates 352 pounds of CO2.
- The natural gas usage for cremation in one year could power an automobile for a distance equivalent to 2,500 trips to the moon and back.
Download the podcast with Mary Woodsen!
All Singing, All Dancing: Storytelling in Busby Berkeley Musicals – Film clip talk at Palo Duro Senior Center, Wednesday, December 11 at 9:30 a.m. MORE INFO
Albuquerque Death Cafe – Come join the wide-ranging conversation at Sheila’s Sweets on Saturday, December 14 at 2:30 p.m. MORE INFO