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.

Monday, December 31, 2012

Resolution: Make Your End of Life Wishes Known

Today's the day. As you reflect on the past year and make a few resolutions for the new year, we have one more resolution for you to make.

Discuss your end of life wishes with your loved ones. Choose a medical power of attorney. Fill out an advance directive. If you've already done these things, resolve to review your advance directive and update it if necessary. Make this the one resolution you fulfill in 2013.

How should you start the conversation? Gather your loved ones around a table--your spouse, your children, close friends, your parents. Have a few blank advance directive documents on the table. The Casa de la Luz Foundation can provide you with hard copies of the Five Wishes, or you can download your state advance directive document from Caring Connections. Have a few pens handy.

Print out an additional resource, such as the starter kit from The Conversation Project or the slide from Engage with Grace's One Slide Project. Either of these projects will help you answer questions such as, "What kind of medical interventions, if any, do I want at the end of life?" and "Who do I want to make healthcare decisions for me, or to advocate for me, if I am unable to speak for myself?"

Some of your family members might be hesitant at first. Some of them will tell you to stop being morbid. Encourage them to not be afraid. Tell them you just want them to be prepared and to have the resources they need when the time comes. Today's the day.

Casa de la Luz Foundation is a nonprofit foundation whose mission is to acquire and dispense funds in support of end of life care within the Tucson community. The Foundation provides free copies of the Five Wishes, an advance directive document, to the community. Request your copy today.

By Carrie Bui, Communications Specialist

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