The quieter you become the more you can hear ~ Ram Dass



Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Alphabe-Thursday

This might be macabre for my letter L post but  I chose Living Wills.


I chose living wills, in lieu of the last six months, with all the talk of "death panels" with the health care debate.  I thought it was lousy and I was livid that  people were using scare tactics.  What was up with that?

 
When we were in our 40's we got our first living wills.  We were able to get a bunch of free legal work done so we got one.  I must admit I was a bit leery and a little uncomfortable doing it but when we were done, I was glad we did.  It gave me and my husband a chance to discuss when our time came what we did and didn't want done.

After we had ours done, mom went and had hers done.  Dad wouldn't do it.  I think he was afraid.  I got to talk to mom about what she wanted.  It was such a relief to understand and know what she wanted.
After my dad died, we all had them done again. This time I thought more carefully before I went and I revised mine a little.  This time I also told my son my thoughts so he would know.

I personally think it is very important for the person making the living will and for family members so they have a clear understanding of your feelings.  Why put the burden on someone else to make decisions when that time comes if they are not aware of what you want.  Also, if there is a dispute within family members there could be litigation which would be terrible for you and them.

Also, it's very important to get a health directive or whatever its called in your state.  This way if your incapacitated and can't speak for yourself, there is someone that you can appoint to speak for you to the doctors and hospitals and they will have more authority.  Very important.


Don't be a laggard on these things.  Get them done now while you are still able.

Go on to to Jenny's, I'm sure there will be more lovely, laughable L words then what I picked LOL
http://jennymatlock.blogspot.com/2010/04/alphabe-thursday-l.html

42 comments:

Debbie said...

This is a great post!~ And we need to do this, it is an important document to have!~

Linda said...

Great reminder to not put off a Living will or any will for that matter.

jeff campbell said...

Very interesting post...I've got one! Not something I will dwell on for now...thanks for your visit to my "Love" post...Peace...and Live, Will Ya?

JDaniel4's Mom said...

This is a great reminder! Thanks!

mrs. c said...

You are so smart to call our attention to this important fact! Sometimes it is not east to talk about serious stuff but we must do it! thanks

mbkatc230 said...

This is such good information, even though not something people like to think about. But really, it's such a loving thing to do for your family, it really does ease the burden. Kathy

Jo said...

ohhhh ... do i have to??? Excellent reminder ... it's one of those things i like to put off but mine is in serious need of being redone. Thanks for the reminder!

Christy said...

So important! We also need to change our wills. Time to make an appt. with the Lawyer!

RNSANE said...

Not only is an advanced directive important but a financial power of attorney, etc. I am dealing with all this now. My mother is an 86-year-old legally blind woman who still lived alone until mid-February. I've spent a couple of months with her in recent months since I lost my job of 21 years in budget cuts and was available. I got meals on wheels started for her which was a godsend. I also had her do an advanced directive for health care since she had never done that. Little did I know that, in mid-Feb, when I returned, I'd find her incoherent, unable to care for herself, etc. I got her to the doctor who hospitalized her immediately. She was in atrial fibrillation and had suffered a right temporaral lobe stroke. She was hospitalized for a week, then transferred to extended care near my brother's in Atlanta. Sadly, she never signed a financial power of attorney so we are having a terrible time taking care of her bills. She did have CDs jointly in my brother and my name and that of our children. Since she didn't give those to us outright five years before hospitalization, these must be used to pay for her care...whereas, otherwise, Medicaid would have assumed payment. Now she must exhaust all her funds first. She will hate this. Growing old is so difficult and very sad.

Steph said...

It is important, though. My Mom has been very concerned about this even though we often reassure her. I know it gives her peace of mind and is another way of showing she loves us.

My name is PJ. said...

This was EXCELLENT, Viki! People put these things off until it's too late and then the rest of the family become warring factions while decisions have to be made.

It can get very ugly.

Julie Schuler said...

Good advice. And I am sorry for RNSANE's predicament. My grandmother wanted to give what little she had to her family and not have it eaten up in nursing home and hospice charges, but that does involve giving someone else power of attorney and putting the assets in someone else's name. And having two battling daughters didn't make it easier!

Nora Johnson said...

This is a great reminder to us all! TFS!

Great post & thanks for stopping by - look forward to *seeing* you again next Thursday!

XOXO LOLA:)

Betty (picture circa 1951) said...

I did a Living Will after seeing that woman in Florida (I think it was Florida) who had parents that didn't want the feeding tube taken out and her husband did. I knew I'd never want to be in that situation. I told my kids I'd come back and haunt them if I ever ended up brain dead with a feeding tube. My Dad is in a nursing home and has had two room mates with feeding tubes. One was over 90 years old when it was put in. I think it helped him live long enough to get bed sores before he died.

Rocky Mountain Woman said...

Excellent advice. I work in the legal field and it's amazing to me how many people put off making a Will, living or otherwise!

Tracy said...

well done for tackling a subject that people ignore. I have told my children my wishes and am booking to see my solicitor toput it in writing. thanks for stopping by

Coralie Cederna Johnson said...

You are so right...great advice!
Happy Alphabet Day!
Coralie

GardenofDaisies said...

Thank you for this reminder to make these health and finance decisions while we are still able.

Maggie B said...

Hi Viki,
What an interesting and thought provoking L post. This is not really something that I have ever given thought to but perhaps now I will.
Thanks for the "prod"!
~Maggie~

lagata said...

An excellent post! I need to do some research and get on this...

Amy said...

we just wrote up our will the other day. It was kind of scary but it needed to be done..

jaydubblah said...

Yep, we have them in England too and ours are done

easternsparkle said...

Not macabre at all - very realistic and necessary, great post!

Jenny said...

This is a great post...I don't think it is macabre at all!

We did ours a few years back when we put our house and assets into a trust.

Thanks for such great information!

Happy Alphabe-Thursday!

A+

Short and Sweet said...

Good ideas. My husband has one but I don't. I better get on it the next time I see my dr.

veterankindergartenteacher said...

This is my first time participating in alphabet Thursday! What fun!

You came up with a very helpful post on information that some of us...me included....would prefer not to think about. But, it is so important. You were smart to do this in your 40's. We need to do the same thing. Thanks for the information on living wills.

veterankindergartenteacher said...

I forgot to leave my information...sorry

Mary Beth @ Live. Laugh. Make Something said...

Hubs and I so need to do this! Thanks for the reminder! I am the new kid in class hopping over from Alphabe-Thursday and am so happy that I did! Please accept my invitation to drop in at my place one day this week when you get a moment. I have become a follower and hope you will do the same. until later...

lissa said...

never thought about it but I think it's a personal choice whether to have one or not, I'm still indecisive

thanks for your visit to my alphabe-thursday

marina said...

Thanks for these tips....I continue to procrastinate about this matter :-)...

MrsJenB said...

Let me tell you, we have definitely had to face this issue and others surrounding it over the past few months with my father-in-law. He was comatose for a short while and we just didn't know what to do. Then he started to come out of it, but he went downhill again. And I can remember at least twice in the past when he brought up the idea of letting my husband in on his plans should something happen to him - I mean, he has his own business and many various accounts and all sorts of stuff. But my husband didn't want to think about it. Well guess what? Life happens whether or not you want to think about it! And I can't tell you how many times I heard him say, while driving to or from the hospital, how much he wished he'd let his dad tell him what he needed to know.

Now, as of just recently, he has a basic living will, but sadly we still don't know what the extent of his plans were - and if he were to tell us, we wouldn't know if we should believe him. It's very sad.

Brenda said...

Something hubs and I really should think about.

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

This was very informational Viki. Having a Living Will is something we should all think about. Thanks!

Nadeen said...

We all have our story, don't we.

I will just say that at least I have a Power of Attorney for my Alzheimer's mother. When you tell people a POA, they pretty much back down from not letting you do stuff.

As for anything else...let me say....DISAPPOINTING.

Christy said...

a living will is SUCH a great idea. my husband and i have them...you never know!

Pondside said...

Good advice! My MIL has one and has also given me power of attorney - she is a woman who knows what she wants!

laterg8r said...

it's important to let those close to you know what you want even if you don't get the living wills drawn up :D

Melinda Cornish said...

it is a great post and an important subject!!!

Tina said...

Good advice. I'll add this to my list of things to stop procrastinating about...

mub said...

This is on my "to do" list. It's just one of those things I haven't mentally psyched myself up into dealing with but I know how important it is so I just need to get over myself *L*

Great post!

Amanda said...

Thanks for doing this post. My siblings and I had to make some really tough choices for our mother a few years ago. She had given us all sorts of info on what to do with her "stuff", but not about choices she would have us make concerning herself.

In earlier conversations we had with her about her views, she had given conflicting opinions. So, we had no definitive answers as to what she would have wanted.

Ultimately, we allowed God to take her home, while health care professionals saw to it that she did not suffer. To this day, we worry that we did not make the decision she wanted us to make, and that she may have left this world feeling betrayed and angry.

baukje said...

You are so right!! I dalso made one , after my father died last year I felt that I had to make one/.. My father was 93 and he had everything written, even the songs to sing in church.......