Thursday, July 24, 2014|
Just a Thought...
Life is not lost by
dying; life is lost minute by minute, day by dragging day, in
all the thousand small uncaring ways. [Stephen Vincent
Hey, do you know what I found out yesterday? That Monday's
CHFI morning e-mail didn't get sent out. Son of a
glitch! That explained why there were fewer visitors than
usual and so I wanted to give you a chance to see a video that I
put together, that you might just enjoy. Those who were
regular journal visitors before 98.1 CHFI very kindly sent out a
link daily did see it, and I heard from many who enjoyed what Rob
and I had done in memory of my mom. I promise it's not sad;
the reason it came up is that I got a chance Friday to tell Pat
Monahan of the band Train just how much his music meant to me on a
personal note. We'd put an album track from California 37
("Sing Together") to pictures as a special tribute to my mom, who
left us in Feb. 2012 whilst staying in...California. At any
rate, the link to Monday's journal is HERE [scroll
down to get to Monday's Journal]. The explanation as to how
to view the video is also there. When you get to my video gallery,
the thumbnail bottom left of a woman leaning against a rail with an
autumn backdrop is Ma. It's not sad. I promise!
By the way - if you're the "Grace" whose wisdom
I shared with readers here Tuesday (about
taking concerts in with your eyes, instead of your camera)
- drop me a line! I have deleted your email and
wanted to send some feedback.
As for today, I thought I'd share with you something I read to
Mike yesterday at around 6:40 am. If you were up and heard
it, I hope it's worth repeating. I sure thought it was and
it actually ties in with the idea of a memorial. I think #5
would definitely have resonated most clearly with my mother -
coincidentally also a nurse; for me it's every single one of
them but #4. Friends who've drifted away were never
meant to stay, only to be there during that chapter and move on to
enrich other people's lives. At least that's how I see
it. I might see things differently if Rob and I weren't so
But this list is sure one big wakeup call. See if you don't
Reveals the Top 5 Regrets People Make on Their Deathbed
(originally written by Bronnie Ware)
For many years I worked in palliative care.
My patients were those who had gone home to die. Some incredibly
special times were shared. I was with them for the last three to
twelve weeks of their lives.
People grow a lot when they are faced with
their own mortality. I learned never to underestimate someone’s
capacity for growth. Some changes were phenomenal. Each
experienced a variety of emotions, as expected, denial, fear,
anger, remorse, more denial and eventually acceptance. Every
single patient found their peace before they departed though,
every one of them.
When questioned about any regrets they had or
anything they would do differently, common themes surfaced again
and again. Here are the most common five:
1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life
true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
This was the most common regret of all. When
people realize that their life is almost over and look back
clearly on it, it is easy to see how many dreams have gone
unfulfilled. Most people had not honoured even a half of their
dreams and had to die knowing that it was due to choices they
had made, or not made.
It is very important to try and honour at
least some of your dreams along the way. From the moment that
you lose your health, it is too late. Health brings a freedom
very few realize, until they no longer have it.
2. I wish I didn’t work so hard.
This came from every male patient that I
nursed. They missed their children’s youth and their partner’s
companionship. Women also spoke of this regret. But as most were
from an older generation, many of the female patients had not
been breadwinners. All of the men I nursed deeply regretted
spending so much of their lives on the treadmill of a work
By simplifying your lifestyle and making
conscious choices along the way, it is possible to not need the
income that you think you do. And by creating more space in your
life, you become happier and more open to new opportunities,
ones more suited to your new lifestyle.
3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my
Many people suppressed their feelings in
order to keep peace with others. As a result, they settled for a
mediocre existence and never became who they were truly capable
of becoming. Many developed illnesses relating to the bitterness
and resentment they carried as a result.
We cannot control the reactions of others.
However, although people may initially react when you change the
way you are by speaking honestly, in the end it raises the
relationship to a whole new and healthier level. Either that or
it releases the unhealthy relationship from your life. Either
way, you win.
4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my
Often they would not truly realize the full
benefits of old friends until their dying weeks and it was not
always possible to track them down. Many had become so caught up
in their own lives that they had let golden friendships slip by
over the years. There were many deep regrets about not giving
friendships the time and effort that they deserved. Everyone
misses their friends when they are dying.
It is common for anyone in a busy lifestyle
to let friendships slip. But when you are faced with your
approaching death, the physical details of life fall away.
People do want to get their financial affairs in order if
possible. But it is not money or status that holds the true
importance for them. They want to get things in order more for
the benefit of those they love. Usually though, they are too ill
and weary to ever manage this task. It is all comes down to love
and relationships in the end. That is all that remains in the
final weeks, love and relationships.
5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.
This is a surprisingly common one. Many did
not realize until the end that happiness is a choice. They had
stayed stuck in old patterns and habits. The so-called ‘comfort’
of familiarity overflowed into their emotions, as well as their
physical lives. Fear of change had them pretending to others,
and to their selves, that they were content. When deep within,
they longed to laugh properly and have silliness in their life
When you are on your deathbed, what others
think of you is a long way from your mind. How wonderful to be
able to let go and smile again, long before you are dying.
Life is a choice. It is YOUR life. Choose
consciously, choose wisely, choose honestly. Choose happiness.
(@CHFIErin on Twitter)