Welcome to House of Light, a blog produced and managed by the staff of Casa de la Luz Hospice. Casa de la Luz ("house of light" in Spanish) is a locally owned and operated hospice, serving the city and surrounding communities of Tucson, Arizona. Through this blog, we hope to offer education, information, and support about caregiving and hospice care to terminally ill patients and their loved ones. For more information, visit the contact us page.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Friday Five: Caring for the End of Life

The Friday Five is our weekly roundup of links to smart articles and helpful resources across the Web.

1. Join AARP's Create The Good program for ideas and how-to guides to create good in your community. We, of course, were especially captivated by the How To Care for a Caregiver guide and the Build a Caring Community Network guide. I'm sure all of us would love to do some good, and maybe this program is just the push you need.

2. This Huffington Post article by Bronnie Ware was interesting and a bit inspiring. Ware worked in palliative care for many years, being with patients who were facing the end of life. In her Huffington Post piece, she shares the "Top 5 Regrets of the Dying." It's interesting to read what people think about at the end of life, but it's truly inspiring because it makes you ask yourself, "what will my regrets be when I die?" The regrets people shared with Ware are not unchangeable regrets. In this way at least, you do have control of your life and your destiny. So, do something that makes you happy today, call an old friend, do something you're scared to do, and spend some time with your family instead of responding to "just one more e-mail."

3. This week, Paula Span wrote a blog post for The New Old Age about a new campaign, "You Gave, Now Save" from The National Council On Aging and the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging. These two agencies hope to encourage elderly adults to learn more about assistance programs and encourage individuals to apply for programs that they probably qualify for and are not utilizing. Plenty of resources for the elderly are available, and area agencies on aging can help connect you to resources in your community.

4. There's a lovely series of YouTube videos by the California HealthCare Foundation, Reflections on End of Life Care. Some of the videos are individuals' personal stories, and I really believe that nothing's more effective than hearing someone else's story. These are real people telling you why they wish had known their loved one's wishes, and this is how they had the end of life conversation with their loved one.

5. Here's a helpful article with accompanying podcast with tips for caregivers. This caregiver resource comes from Cancer.net, a site with information approved by the American Society of Clinical Oncology. If you've just started caring for an elderly parent or other aging loved one, this article is nice because it's a pretty extensive list and best for a new caregiver. Seasoned caregivers will find they've already heard most of the information before.

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