Grief is an inescapable moment in life when we encounter losses. This can be the loss of our dreams, the loss of a marriage relationship, the loss of a body part due to an accident or illness, or the loss of a loved one. For all these, however, grief is also a sacred moment.
While every person goes through unique journeys of grief, the common denominator remains to be goodbye. We need to be able to say goodbye in order for our grief to fully settle in and in order for us to heal properly. And yet, what do we do when the goodbye is intended for a loved one in their terminal condition?
Goodbyes are familiar to us in the industry of providing hospice care in Burbank, California. However, we will never be experts in the process. Yet, in all the years we’ve served, we have witnessed that goodbyes, once verbalized, increased the strength of both the speaker and listener. With that, we would like to share the following guidelines to prepare you on what to say when you finally need to bid goodbye.
- Stop waiting for the right “timing”
Make it a point to say your goodbye in an atmosphere of love, seriousness, and courage. There are many ways to say goodbye, but what’s important is that you assure them that you’ll be alright and you’ll live a purposeful life.
- Follow the lead of your loved one
When they touch on the topic of passing on, whether they intend to or not, you can ride on that. Let them know that you are ready and you will stand by them until the end.
- Talk to them even when they’re unconscious
In most cases, the few remaining hours put your loved one in an unconscious state. Take this opportunity to talk to them. Even if you feel like they have not heard you, they do. Speak to them about your love and gratitude so they can easily let go.
- Avoid making formal goodbyes every time you leave
Assuring them of your love and encouraging them to have a good rest instead are more preferred. This is what we also recommend based on our experience of extending hospice in Burbank.
- Get a feel of the situation
Avoid thinking about the mechanics of how to deliver your words and whether you can say it correctly or not. When you’re sensitive of your loved one’s current mood and condition, you will have that instinct on what you need to say. Trust that.
Making our goodbyes may seem more difficult when we see our loved one struggling with pain in their waning time. However, when they’re receiving palliative care in California, these pains can be managed, granting you more appropriate opportunity to have meaningful moments with them.
At Mar Vista Hospice, we endeavour for you and your loved one to pursue meaningful togetherness as you make your final goodbye. If you need our services, don’t hesitate to arrange an appointment with us.