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To Feed or Not to Feed

Today, Terri Schiavo died. I just heard it on the news. I was fascinated with how widespread the story became. How so many people got involved, from the Governor of Florida, the Vatican, The President of the United States, and of course, Jesse Jackson. We can't leave out Brother Jesse. He seems to find his way into many controversies.

I spoke to people who had strong opinions on both sides. Some siding with Schiavo's husband, some siding with her parents. Some were highly upset the government got involved. Others were upset about the removal of the feeding tube.

Speaking of the feeding tube, the whole incident did prove to be educational for myself and many others I think. Do you have to be brain dead to need a feeding tube? No. Many people can be on feeding tubes for many reasons. An example is the Pope of recent days, who has a feeding tube in his nose, which will hopefully help him to build his strength they say.

The most beneficial outcome of this event, well, maybe beneficial isn't the right word, but it has people talking. Talking about death, talking about choices and options. Making preparations for death is a subject many people want to avoid, but this case shows us how very important it is to discuss. Or else, family members can potentially take your life, death, and choices all the way to the Supreme Court, involving whole a country and even the world.

Have you completed a Living Will? Did you know that in some states, California being one of them, a Living Will is not enough when it comes to health care choices? Have you filled in an Advance Health Care Directive? That form specifically discusses your personal decisions about your health and welfare. Have you educated yourself?

I saw an interview about hospice last week. Three ladies in that industry shared some insights on end-of-life decisions. How much insight do you have? Now is the time to take care of your business. Terri Schiavo was 26 when her life, and the life of her family changed forever. Don't take one minute of your life for granted.

To Feed or Not to Feed? The choice is yours, but you have to make the decision now while you are still able.

by Paula Hines Lonergan

Writing and Publishing Tip:

In one of my writing seminars, I mentioned to a class that sometimes other people may be a little jealous of your writing endeavors. One lady in the audience piped in and said "A little?" I didn't get to talk with her about her personal experience, but her comment told me that she obviously had experienced a little opposition, AKA, envy perhaps from others. One of the most beneficial statements I read before I started my first book was by Dan Poynter. He said to expect some people to be jealous of your writing a book. Hmmmm! You mean, not everyone will appreciate your endeavor, sometimes even the ones closest to you. It's possible. Being an author is something esteemed in this world. Think of all the people who have successful careers in various fields, what do they eventually do? Write a book, perhaps about their life or event their poetry (take Alicia Keys). Writing is no little feat. If you are working toward that endeavor, don't let the negative talk of others get you down. Remember if you don't mind, then it don't matter. What matters is for you to "Do Your Thing", focus, and be happy with your accomplishments and enjoy the journey getting there.

Inspirational thought of the day:

With age comes wisdom. Grey-haired ones are a gift. There is much to be learned from the elderly or older ones. The interesting stories they have to tell. The wisdom they have to share. The funny things to have to say. Many times, our elderly are left alone, lonely, in their homes and convalescents homes. Yet, there is so much to gain from their company. Take the time to visit the elderly, call them, benefit yourself. There's more happiness in giving than in receiving, of course, but just think of what you can get back in return. It's worth the time, energy, and effort. I've experienced it myself.

Copyright 2005 Paula Lonergan.
All rights reserved.