I realize there may be once a time when I will no longer be able to make health care – or even any – decisions. If and when the time comes, I want my best friend to make them for me. The members of family – existing and future – are the people I love and trust, still in a difficult situation they might find it hard to make the best choice. I am afraid that emotions and fear will prevent them from thinking clearly and rationally. In the hour of need I’d like someone close but reasonable to made health care decisions for me when I will not be able to make them. If my best friend will not be able or willing to make choice for me, then my cousin and my spouse are my second and third choices.
As for the medical treatment – first of all – I do not want to be in pain. I would like to receive enough food, fluid and medicine, as well as be kept warm and clean. I don’t want the doctors and nurses to do or omit doing anything that will result in taking my life. I want to have life-support treatment if my doctor believes that would help in cases of being close to death, in coma and not expected to recover, or with permanent or severe brain damage. But if the life-support treatment does not help my condition and symptoms, I want my doctor stop giving it.
The comfortable conditions I would like to enjoy when old or unable to take care of myself are hygienic procedures and being warm and clean – having massages, baths and personal care as often as possible. I want to be relieved from any kind of pain or other kind of suffering.
I want people to be near me most of the time, and I want my hand to be held and I’d like to be talked to if possible, but with kindness and cheerfulness only. I’d like to listen to my favorite music and have my favorite things and photos around. I would like my clothes and linens to be kept clean and changed as often as if I had been able to do it myself.
I do not wish to die at home; I do not want to preoccupy my relatives and bring deep mourning into the house.
I want my relatives to remember I care for them more then anyone in the world, and to forgive me for not showing that every second of my life. I would like them to forgive and forget all the small misunderstandings that kept us apart any time in life. I want them to forgive me if I ever hurt them and I want them to remember that I have forgiven them as well. I’d like my caregivers to respect my views and decisions even if they do not share them, and to remember me the way I was before I got seriously ill – and refer to that image even after I die. After death I want by body cremated. And if there are any troubles with my funeral – I want my family members not to preoccupy themselves with the ceremony – I would like to be let go easily and without deep grief or sorrow. I want my family and friends to know that I am not afraid of death – it is just a door to another world.
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