Most of us are skilled at making adjustments based on new information. If a road signs says "danger ahead" and tells us to take a detour, we know we're better off adapting rather than maintaining our normal course as if nothing has changed.
Unfortunately, when a loved one faces serious illness, our desire to be helpful and encouraging sometimes prevents us from making adjustments that are absolutely necessary. Our good intentions cause us to delay action- even ignore clear signs of trouble- until it's too late and crisis strikes.
Perhaps the most difficult revelation in all of life occurs when we face mortality. What happens when an 87 year old mother starts to quickly decline as her heart- which has been failing for years- finally gives out? Has the family recognized that this serious illness will one day change their world? Have they prepared for this? Did they become educated on what the "road ahead" looks like, or did they ignore the clear signs? To say with controlled reason "yes, everyone dies" is one thing. To watch your loved one go through that journey in front of your own eyes is something else entirely.
The most common phrase we hear as we help people navigate this difficult season is: "I just wish someone had told us about hospice sooner. It was so much easier and we understood what was happening. It didn't make our loss easy, but it helped us tremendously as we navigated this path."
What does the road ahead look like? Call Horizon at (509) 489-4591 to discuss your questions and to get the help you need as you support your seriously ill loved one.