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Atul Gawande's "Being Mortal" Changed My Life

This book helped me deal with my own mortality and how to assess what will be important to me as I begin to die

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That I will die had always freaked me out. I knew it to be true but I could not accept it. It still seems somewhat impossible. But the intensity of the impossibility has lessened through this book (and Buddhism). And through this book I learned how many people through assuming that somehow they would avoid death get into situations of intense and terrible suffering in the last phase of their life.  What is truly important to a person facing their death?  What are their true priorities?  Do the people who have them in their care understand these and are they determined to make sure those priorities drive the decisions and advice they give that person?  These are some of the big questions in this book. It's as much for healthcare providers as it is for those who face death themselves. I think any healthcare organization that holds true to the tenets in this book will do well by those that depend on it for quality, respectful, sane care in regard to the end of life.

What is a provocation or insight that might inspire others during this challenge?

You know you will die, but do you accept it? You know the person in your care will one day die, but do you accept it? Knowing and accepting are different.

Tell us about your work experience:

Managing the design and construction of healthcare facilities


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Photo of Digby C

I didn't know it wasn't published. I see the publish button now. I'll hit it in just a second. Thankyou!

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