Funeral homes serving the area of Mount Vernon, WA will honor your last wishes. However, if you don’t specify your last wishes and you don’t talk with your family about them, then you put the burden of having to figure out what you would want – both in end-of-life care and after death – to be done.
What are last wishes? Not only are last wishes what you do and don’t want your funeral to be, but they are also what your care at the end of your life should be. If you don’t have anything in place legally that specifies what you want and don’t want in terms of medical care at the end of your life and that specifies who can make medical decisions for you, then you hand all the control for the end of your life over to medical professionals.
The purpose of medicine is to perpetuate life if at all possible. Every doctor takes the Hippocratic Oath, which commits them to the promise to “do no harm.” Therefore, they are in the life business, not the death business. So, if there is something that can be done to extend the quantity of your life, then doctors are duty-bound to do it, regardless of the quality of life that’s associated with it.
Let’s be clear. The medical profession is not intentionally practicing quantity over quality when it comes to your life, but often that’s the net result of end-of-life healthcare. You can take control over this and decide what you do and don’t want done now.
Part of specifying your last wishes is creating a legal advance directive. This includes documents like a medical power of attorney and a living will.
Everyone should have a document that appoints someone to make medical decisions for them if they are unable to make them. The reality is that if you have surgery and you are under general anesthetic, at that moment in time, regardless of how young or healthy you are, you can’t make your own medical decisions.
If something should go awry or a medical decision needs to be made and you do not have a legal medical power of attorney that appoints someone as your medical proxy, meaning that they can make medical decisions for you at a time like this, then the medical team doing your surgery will make the decision. However, it might not be the decision you would make and its outcome may not be in your long-term best interests or how you would have decided to live the rest of your life.
A living will is a legal document that lets you specify the kind of care you want if you are dying. If you don’t have this, medical staff will do everything they can to keep you alive for as long as possible, even if there is no quality of life left by doing so.
Both of these documents can be created using online forms. As long as you sign and date them, they are legal. Be sure that your medical proxy has a copy of both of them.
While you’re creating your advance directive, write down what you want and don’t want for your funeral. Be sure to share this with your family, so that they can simply communicate those to the funeral home with bearing the added stress of trying to figure out what would make you happy.
For additional information about advanced directives and funeral homes serving the area of Mount Vernon, WA, our compassionate and experienced team at Moles Farewell Tributes & Crematory – Bayview Chapel is here to help. You can visit our funeral home at 2465 Lakeway Dr., Bellingham, WA 98229 or you can call us today at (360) 733-0510.