My Death Wish

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Recent events brought to my attention that I might not live to be a hundred as I planned. I mean don’t get me wrong, nothing has changed, I still plan on sitting on the porch of an assisted living home –high up in my 90’s. I will be listening to “Uprising” by Muse -just to wake them all up- and my husband will be right by my side, sipping his watered- down beer through a straw. A senior dog we haven’t met yet, will be resting at our feet.

We will rock together, that’s the plan, but life has the tendency to look at my plans and change them exactly then when I think I have it all figured out. Been there, done that!

So I sat down and started to write my Living Will, even added things that should be in my last will. I don’t want to be buried in soil, and I don’t want to have a memorial service. Instead spread my ashes where I can see nature’s beauty (or near the dog park) and have a memorial party on my birthday.

THEY can have all my organs -should be taken out before the cremation and after death- but you can’t have my face or my brain (both are personal).

Then I finally wrote down everything what the Living Will is all about. How I want to be allowed to die. I continued writing down my wishes about life support and resuscitation and all of a sudden I stopped. “Honey, why is it called a living will, when everything has to do with my death?”

No answer…just a look from my knight-in-shining-armor.

Think about it, I am not writing down how I want to live, I am making a list of how I wish to die, and how I wish to be treated after my death.

Shouldn’t we rename that thing and call it “Death Wish?” I got another look when I told him about my idea, which made me laugh out loud.

We have this life-and-death thing so often wrong. We call it prolonging life, while we actually prolong death when we force people to continue to suffer with fatal diseases. We call it a living will, when we talk about our death.

It was actually an enjoyable experience to plan everything before and after my demise. “Que sera sera…what ever will be, will be.” 

17 thoughts on “My Death Wish

  1. A friend of mine with some specific training held a Zoom series of chats and instruction from a workshop she put together called “Ending Well.” I was surprised how at first I felt a little uncomfortable. I didn’t expect that to be so. But a living will and writing out your intentions was part of the process. It was a good time to do some of this, as we’ve been home a lot over the past 18 months! I couldn’t say I didn’t have time to think about it. Your sense of humor is refreshing Bridget. You have some good insights into how we speak about life and death with some ironic observations. I think too many of us, myself included, really do want to avoid the topic, as though that changes anything at all!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I couldn’t agree more with you. We have outsourced ‘death’ to hospitals and nursing homes, so we don’t deal with it anymore. Death has become something that doesn’t seem to fit into our lives anymore. A topic we avoid all together.

      A post without humor or without a sprinkle of irony is seldom found on my blog. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. It is always good to plan ahead, and state your wishes. I have already written what I want my headstone to stay, usually it is the job of the children to come up with something, but seeing as there are none, I have done it (with the help of my husband) myself.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. George Burns once said that living to 100 was a good thing as not many people died over the age of 100. It is a bit scary writing a ‘living will’. I have to go down that path soon too. But I like that it sets out what you want to be done with yourself and your kids know when the time comes what to do with me.
    I’m planning something similar to you, I’m dead, cremate me then have a wake, no church service just celebrate that I was once in your lives.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I look like your suggested new names . I also plan to live to well past my use by date. My kids are terrified they may have to look after me in my dotage but I’ve assured them that I’ll probably still be looking after them till I’m 100.

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  5. An important thing, not to be forgotten, is whether in the event of some tragedy you want to be kept alive by machines, that is, to have a life as a vegetable, or not to be.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I just followed the links to your post re a Dementia will. You describe where my mom is now. All of us who know her know that in a board and care after a fall and stroke and progressing Alzheimer’s for probably the prior 5-10 years is the last place she would want to be. She’s been there for a couple of months now.

      Based on my experience, what you’ve written is probably appropriate for all similar cases, including my mom’s. The hardest thing I’ve had to deal with, after I made the decision on where she should be for the best continuing care, was to realize and accept that we all, including her, wish she could be the way she was but that is just not possible. It’s a fine line to balance on when all parties reach that realization with the understanding that we all just have to accept and deal with the way we all are now.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I am so deeply sorry that you are having to experience this dreadful stage of your Mom’s life. It is hard for all of you. When dealing with my Mother in Law’s illness I found I was the one who had to make all the arrangements and complete all the legal paperwork. Partly because I knew the system, as I worked in a Dementia Care charity, but mainly because all the children were so traumatised that they were incapable of rational management of the practicalities. No-one is ever prepared for dementia no matter how much they think they are. There are often sad times, there may be despairing times, but there can also be funny times and there will definitely be times of fond reminiscences. No matter what occurs, your Mom will always be your Mom, and you will always love her. She is safe. That is the prime concern. Always remember to look after yourself, and each other and have a good laugh about the silly things of life!

        Liked by 2 people

        • Thanks for the kind and as comforting as possible words. If only I had family members to fall back on or at least to possibly reminisce with about the good times. Without going into all the sad details, just suffice to say I had expected to have support from my one and only sister and husband when and if this time came. I have neither. If you want to know any of the details re one of them you can go to my blog, such as it is. Re the other, that individual has already told me she (giving it away here) will not be attending Mom’s funeral!

          Fortunately Mom (and Dad before her) had already made most of the required arrangements, financial and otherwise, a while ago. On top of that, I have good friends who have helped me through the rest and are doing their best to make sure I am taking care of myself, within the confines of COVID and life in general.

          Liked by 1 person

  6. That’s something sensible so that people know what to do….just in case….otherwise they may not. We’ve done something similar and plan on hanging around as long as possible too, though without the dog.

    Liked by 2 people

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