Not exactly the most cheerful title, eh?
But the fact remains that dying is what we're constrained to do, and if you're married, one or the other of you will start that journey first.
It's not a pleasant process, and I won't sugar coat it with Hallmark Card sweetness. But, to quote Tennyson, some work of noble note may yet be done. I'm going to try to help you get there.
My qualifications? I am dying, myself, and am trying to understand the road, to ease things for my wife.
This isn't just a series to help you offer a kind of martyred comfort to the dying, taking the burdens on yourself. This is intended to help YOU survive with your health, your heart, and your conscience intact.
Dying's nasty, but while it demands compassion, it doesn't confer entitlement. It's a Bad Trip, but shouldn't be a guilt trip - for either of you.
This is to help you walk into a future that's certainly unwanted, in the form it's assuming, but one you'll have to live in nonetheless.
Some of the topics we'll cover will be:
* Faith - being terminal changes perspective
* Interests - that which you've shared may fall away, and you need to be true to yourself
* Distancing - it happens. He or she is dying, and you're not. We'll look at how to avoid the almost inevitable survivor's guilt.
* Sex - it can be very hard to be physically responsive to a dying mate. And terminal illness can make intimacy seem irrelevant to the dying...which can be hurtful to you.
* Future Plans - what to share, and what not to share. Hint - if you've already got a replacement lined up, don't share that.
I'm going to leave this open-ended; your comments may inspire further topics, and I would like to be thorough.
So, next time...Faith.