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View Diary: To Treat or Not to Treat: That is the Question (105 comments)

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  •  My mother made it easy (13+ / 0-)

    She had been smoking since age 17, and her COPD kept getting worse.  

    I had tried several times to get her to quit, and she actually did for 8 months one time.  I told her that I didn't want to care for her when she was on oxygen and she said when that time came she would stop eating.  She had seen a friend die slowly from COPD in a nursing home and she didn't want her life to end that way.

    After she cared for a great aunt that had a stroke and (only) local Catholic nursing home insisted on feeding her through the tube that the hospital had inserted to give her Dilantin to treat seizures, my mom signed a living will stating that she didn't want food or hydration.

    When she had to go on oxygen, she stopped taking her meds including the diuretic that kept her blood pressure down and had several mini-strokes that kept her too impaired to care for herself, so he went into a small group home to wait for a room at the care facility she had selected in advance, and she stopped eating or drinking.

    When all 4 of her children were finally there, she woke up and told us to call the local hospice, get a hospital bed in her room at home, and take her home.  We obeyed, and she was able to die at home with family and hospice care, as she wanted, with the palliative care she wanted.

    I also made a living will when my great aunt died, and my family knows that I also don't want to be revived if I would have major impairments that would prevent me from enjoying life.

    "Everybody wants to go to Heaven but nobody wants to die" --- Albert King

    by HarpboyAK on Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 11:57:08 PM PDT

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