As a culture we Americans have so much to learn about dying and death, but luckily the health care systems seems to be learning how to treat the dying person with dignity and helping the family make some decisions with grace. My mother-in-law is beginning her final phase, and the nursing home where she is living seems dedicated to making her comfortable along with making us comfortable. Hospice care has been called in to treat us all. And overall the level of care for us is excellent. Her doctor has spent lots of time making sure that each decision made is right for our family. I feel cradled by all this support.
I know Mom is being made to feel as comfortable as possible. She is doing a lot of peaceful sleeping. This is the way we all want to approach death - softly, painlessly. Nothing can totally erase the sting of death for the survivors but knowing that the suffering is minimized certainly helps. When my time comes, I hope I have a caring team like this to help me leave with grace and dignity.