When a loved one is approaching the last days of their life, nothing is more important than the presence of those they hold dear. Trying times call for an empathetic, supportive, and loving company, as well as the sensitivity, understanding, and strength of others. As they reach the end, how can you help them make the most of the remaining time?
Prioritize Visiting Them
The Hospice of the Calumet Area stresses the importance of being present for a dying loved one. It doesn’t matter whether they’re conscious or not, or if they even know you’re around. Frequent visits uplift their mood and allow you to maximize your time together.
Your loved one is aware that it’s a struggle to see them wither away, slowly, before your eyes. Visiting them anyway lets them feel appreciated. If you used to hang out often, when they were still well, seeing you will give them a sense of normalcy, giving them a break from their sickness.
Be Honest with Your Feelings
You’re devastated, and it will show, no matter how hard you try to hide it. When you come over and tell your loved one they look better today, when you’re both well aware that it’s not true, it hurts them. While they appreciate how you try to be strong and keep things normal, honest, heart-to-heart talks are necessary for you to express your love and concern.
Tell them how much you’ll miss them, because this gives them the chance to tell you how they feel. This doesn’t mean you’ll spend your visits crying your eyes out. This means you acknowledge a devastating situation without letting it overshadow your love.
Clear the Air
Whatever grievances you may have had in the past, let go of them. Regardless of them being your fault or not, be the first to ask for forgiveness. Clear the air of anything that may keep you both from enjoying the moment and seeing each other. This will lighten the mood greatly and allow you to live in the moment, the way you should.
Being present for a dying loved one is heartbreaking. But, it’s something you’ll never regret. Be there to remind them how they lived and loved, and how thankful you are to have them from when you first met, down to the last time you see each other.