A GOOD DEATH
Scary. Dark. Painful. These are some of the words that come to mind when one is asked to use some words to describe death. Good is not in there. So what constitutes a good death? A good death is nearly impossible to define. Just like there are several different views on death, they are even more ways on how many wish to go out. If you ask people how they want their life to end on this beautiful green earth, many will state that they wish to die in the comfort of their own home surrounded by their own belongings and the familiar laughter and smiles of loved ones. Yet as we know, this rarely happens. So while we know we can not choose how or where we will take our last breath, most of us have the opportunity to plan ahead not only for ourselves, but for our caregivers and friends as well.
A good death is difficult to measure but most would agree that a good death is the dying person dying in a way that they wish to. This can be anywhere from having a pain free death, to being spiritually ready to go. To some, a good death is just cherishing the moments and memories that they have left to make with the ones they love.
Everyone has found themselves saying to someone “I never meant to hurt you." so we know how easy it is to harm someone when that was the complete opposite of our intentions. We may do something with the goal of protecting or helping someone, when in actuality we are doing more harm than good. In efforts to make things easier, we are notorious for making things harder than they need to be. Because of our fears and emotions, we can make death more difficult than it already is. Some may give the dying person false hope about recovery or encourage them to pursue any and all life prolonging options that are out there. In some minority cultures such as Hispanics and African Americans, they may try to make the illness seem less than what is or hide the diagnosis all together. Now this is not done with cruel intentions. Nonetheless it can...