I’ve attended two farewell cocktail parties in the past two years, both scheduled as a substitute for aging parent funerals. Another friend invited everyone to a ballgame to celebrate a parent’s life with a memorial picnic afterward. And most recently I attended an engaging theatre production to honor a deceased friend. While some of these … Continue reading
Tagged with end of life …
Older Elders and the End of Life
If you are an adult child with ninetysomething parents, you are probably familiar with the drill. Like me you may receive phone calls from an elderly parent a couple of times each week, usually asking a question, describing a problem, or just expressing anxiety. Or you may hear from caregivers about a problem — a … Continue reading
Jane Gross Lecture on Caregiving and Her Family
Last fall Jane Gross, journalist and author of A Bittersweet Season, spoke about her experiences supporting and caring for her elderly mother. The presentation at Brethren Village, a retirement community in Lancaster, PA, shares observations, experiences, things she wishes she had done, and much more.
Famed Clinicians: Prepared but Not Ready for Death
When we think about dying, about the end of our lives, we may look to the experts for guidance — to those people who have long experience with various aspects of aging and the medical issues that complicate the process of dying. We assume that these people have their own end of life details all worked … Continue reading
Oliver Sacks’ Perspective on the End of His Life
The direction of every life can change in a moment. We learn this as we age and also as we support elder parents. In his February 19, 2015, New York Times’ opinion piece, My Own Life, Dr. Oliver Sacks illustrates how fast things can change. If you missed his article, it’s a stirring description of what it’s like to … Continue reading
Roz Chast’s Graphic Novel: Serious Humor for Adult Children Caretakers
This morning I am going to One More Page, my local independent book store, to purchase Roz Chast’s new graphic novel, Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant? I’ve never read a graphic novel, although I frequently pass by them in local independent book stores. Today, however, I will buy the book and explore this new-to-me genre, really … Continue reading
Steven Colbert’s Amazing Remembrance of Mom
Stephen Colbert took a few minutes, at the beginning of his June 19, 2013 program, share and remember his mother, Lorna, who died last week in her nineties. Well worth watching. The video is courtesy of Hulu via Upworthy.
Why is Hospice Still A Tough Call–Even for People Who Know?
When a person is approaching the end of life, we can find no easy answers, no solution that fits every person’s or family’s situation, even when they know a lot about the options available to them. To illustrate this you will want to read For Hospice Pioneer, Still a Tough Call, by Paula Span at … Continue reading
Senator McGovern in Hospice Care
Hospice offers so many options and opportunities to families. This Associated Press article appeared in today’s Washington Post (10-16-2012). It is worth reading.
Out-of-Pocket Medical Expenses Loom Large Despite Medicare
Adult children who help aging parents should check out the Washington Post article At End of Life, Medicare Beneficiaries Spend Thousands Out-of-Pocket. Reporter Sarah Kliff explains that a recent study, Out of Pocket Spending in the Last Five Years of Life (abstract), published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, examined the amount of money that aging … Continue reading
Longer Old Age but Lower Quality Near the End?
A few days ago I added a must read link to Michael Wolff’s New York Magazine article, A Life Worth Ending. It’s an eye-opening piece, detailing long drawn-out decline of his mother. Check it out — it really is a must read. For our parents there are no easy end-of-life answers. Those of us with … Continue reading
A Daugher’s Long Goodbye: A Book Review by Mom and Me
When my mom picked up A Daughter’s Long Goodbye: Caring for Mother at the church library, she brought it home and quickly read it cover to cover. Then she suggested that I read it — well actually she instructed me to do so. Caring for Mother, written in 2007, is not easy reading. Virginia Stem … Continue reading
Read — Making the Best of What Could be the Worst – Atlantic Article
Read the March 7, 2012 Atlantic article, Making the Best of What is Often the Very Worst Time of Our Lives. Whether we are helping to support aging parents right now or thinking about the years when we become elderly adults, we all know the situation. Our health care system and long-term care options are … Continue reading
Jane Gross on NPR’s Tell Me More
If you missed the Michel Martin’s Tell Me More on Monday, January 23, 2012, head over to the program’s website to hear Jane Gross talk about her book, A Bittersweet Season: Caring For Our Aging Parents and Ourselves. Her conversation covered a broad range of aging parent-adult child topics including Medicare, financial problems, end-of life issues, … Continue reading
Forging Adult Children-Aging Parent Connections BEFORE the Challenging Years
It’s that time of year again. Many blogs and caregiving articles are encouraging adult children to “be alert for signs” of extreme aging. With titles such as “Ten Things to Observe When You Visit Your Aging Parents Over the Holidays” or “How to Spy and Check Out Whether A Parent Needs Support,” the posts explain … Continue reading
End-of-Life Documents — Don’t Mess Around
Many years ago, shortly after my daughter was born, my parents asked my husband and me about our will. It turned out, however, that they were less concerned about a will than they were about whether we had signed medical directives or health care proxies that defined what should be done is case one of us, … Continue reading
Eleanor Clift Writes About Hospice
Journalist Eleanor Clift has written a superb article in the August 2011 publication Health Affairs about the hospice experience of her husband, journalist Tony Brazaitis, in the months before he died of cancer. It’s freely available and filled with astute observations and information — a good read for anyone, but especially for families who may have to … Continue reading
Conversations about Dying
“… old age is a place we have never been. We may see it up close as our parents age, but we will never know what it’s like until we’re there.” The quote comes from a piece I just read, a post by Paul Staley at the KQED Perspectives site. Staley describes a conversation that he had with … Continue reading
Washington Post Article on Hospice and Palliative Care
Today’s Washington Post features an article, Progress Needed on End of Life Care, by Janice Lynch Schuster, describing the urgent need for improvements to palliative and hospice care. The article describes the problems that still exist for many patients at the end of their lives who experience unnecessary suffering and pain. I’ve written about our … Continue reading
Over at the Inside Aging Parent blog, Carol recently posted Conversations About End of Life with a link to a BlogTalk radio program interviewing author Kelsey Collins (check out Collin’s videos presentations). I have just listened to the program so I recommend checking out Carol’s post and the radio interview. In her book Exit Strategy: Leaving this Life with … Continue reading