Dying Matters Awareness Week provides a wonderful opportunity for us to raise awareness about Palliative and End of Life Care as well as open conversations around death, dying and bereavement, making it easier for you and your loved ones to consider what it means to “be in a good place to die”.
Of course being in a good place doesn’t always mean physically. Throughout this week we will be exploring what this may mean emotionally, spiritually, financially, legally, and digitally as well as physically by sharing stories, providing some useful information, and sharing helpful resources with you.
Death is a normal part of life and it’s just as important to plan for the end of life as it is for the beginning - so let's live well, our way, to the end of our life, because dying matters.
We all have a different interpretation of what ‘living well’ means. For some, living well may mean staying at home and spending time with family, whereas for others it may about being free from pain.
We want everyone on the Island living with a condition that is terminal or life limiting to be able to receive ‘hospice influenced care’ that is well co-ordinated, flexible and personal to them when they need it, in a setting of their choice. Whether this be within our Hospice building, or at home with our Hospice at Home services, expressing your preferences in our Advance Care Plan can help you share your decisions and shape your future care, to ensure you are in a good place to die.
After losing her husband, Sarah speaks about how an Advance Care Plan would have been useful to her and her husband’s family following his death, and how recording your future care and post-death preferences is so important.
You can download your Advance Care Plan here >>
Legally & Financially
While it’s not something that many of us like to think about, preparing for what will happen to our money and the possessions that are most dear to us when we are no longer around, is something that we should all make sure we take the time to do to ensure we are in a good place to die legally and financially. This can be done by writing a Will.
Ensuring that loved ones are cared for will understandably be the priority for most people. However, have you also considered leaving a gift to charitable causes that are close to your heart in your Will?
Although there’s no obligation for you to think of Hospice when writing your Will, we would be grateful if you would consider us. This act of generosity has no financial impact during your life, but would help us to continue helping others after your death, leaving a lasting legacy in your memory.
You can find out more about remembering us in your Will and leaving a lasting legacy to Hospice here >>>
Starting the conversation about dying, particularly with those close to you, is never easy, however it can come as a relief once the subject is brought out into the open and you are able to express how you feel about death with your loved ones, perhaps healing relationships or finding peace with yourself along the way.
Conversations about your death and after you have died can help you and your loved ones to cope better both emotionally and practically, supporting you to be in a good place to die emotionally when the time comes.
Our wonderful programme ‘A friend to the end’ is specifically designed to provide companionship and emotional support to people in the last 72 hours of their life. By sitting with you, holding your hand, reading to you, playing music or simply just being with you during this time can be an emotional comfort at the end of life, and help you be in a good place to die.
Many people find great support from spiritual beliefs. Referring to faith at the end of life can often help many people be in a good place to die.
Spiritual care is an integral part of the care that Hospice provides and is offered to patients, families and carers regardless of faith, religion or beliefs. Our chaplaincy and pastoral care team works closely with faith groups in the community and welcomes representatives of patients' own churches and faiths.
Our team can also assist in organising special occasions such as marriage, blessing, thanksgivings, renewal of vows, baptisms, dedications and confirmations as the need arises. Find out how the team can help you be in a good place to die here >>
Have you ever considered what happens to your digital platforms when you are gone? Because on the internet, you can live forever.
Your photos, social media posts, music, books, passwords, online accounts and other digital assets play a huge part in your life, but they don’t just disappear once you die. To ensure your online assets and privacy are protected once you die there is lots of useful information and tools you can use to ensure you are in control of your digital legacy.
This week, Compassionate Isle of Man volunteers Mike Bonner and Chris Gledhill will be meeting with Manx Radio’s Rhian Evans to talk about not only the importance of Dying Matters week as a whole, but particularly how to protect your digital life once you have died.
Once we are able to, we look forward to sharing their upcoming interview.
Dying matters, so ensuring you are in a good place to die physically, emotionally, financially, spiritually, legally and digitally really can help you plan for end of life and prepare for death. So let’s talk about it, compassionately.