In honor of THANKSGIVING this year, a special message about life and death from Alexandra Drane and the Engage With Grace team. This initiative was born from the story of a young woman, a mom just 32 years old, who was dying of glioblastoma and desperately wanted to do so at home, with grace, rather than in the hospital. Have you and your family considered how you might handle end-of-life choices when the day comes? Please read:
"We make choices throughout our lives — where we want to live, what
types of activities will fill our days, with whom we spend our time.
These choices are often a balance between our desires and our means, but
at the end of the day, they are decisions made with intent. But when it
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comes to how we want to be treated at the end our lives, often we don't
express our intent or tell our loved ones about it.
This has real consequences. 73% of Americans would prefer to die at
home, but up to 50% die in hospital. More than 80% of Californians say
their loved ones "know exactly" or have a "good idea" of what their
wishes would be if they were in a persistent coma, but only 50% say
they've talked to them about their preferences. But our end of life
experiences are about a lot more than statistics. They're about all of
So the first thing we need to do is start talking. Engage With
Grace: The One Slide Project was designed with one simple goal:
to help get the conversation about end of life experience started. The
idea is simple: Create a tool to help get people talking. One Slide, with just
five questions on it. Five questions designed to help get us talking
with each other, with our loved ones, about our preferences.
And we're asking people to share this One Slide - wherever and
whenever they can.at a presentation, at dinner, at their book club. Just
One Slide, just five questions. Lets start a global discussion that,
download The One Slide and share it at any opportunity - with colleagues, family,
friends. Think of the slide as currency and donate just two minutes
whenever you can. Commit to being able to answer these five questions
about end of life experience for yourself, and for your loved ones. Then
commit to helping others do the same. Get this conversation started.
(Editor's note: I hope you can read it here. Otherwise go check out the original in PDF format)
Let's start a viral movement driven by the change we as individuals
can effect... and the incredibly positive impact we could have
collectively. Help ensure that all of us — and the people we care for —
can end our lives in the same purposeful way we live them. Just One
Slide, just one goal. Think of the enormous difference we can make
(To learn more please click here.)"
* Special thanks also to Paul Levy of Running a Hospital and Matthew Holt of The Health Care Blog for starting the blog-based EwG movement. The hard truth is, we all need to think in advance about these issues ahead of time, for ourselves and for our loved ones. And give thanks for the lives we enjoy now!