The “oh dear!” is due to the discovery this morning that my husband’s updated advanced directive is not yet signed! We were reading the article in today’s Brattleboro Reformer by Richard Davis on the editorial page. “PREPARE” is the heading and Richard gives an excellent explanation of why you want to have a directive. Another place where you can find a ton of clear info is on the website of THE VERMONT ETHICS NETWORK. However, all the information in the world won’t give you a completed Advanced Directive.
If you need to be convinced that having a directive is a good idea please look at any of the references on our RESOURCES page. The article by Atul Gawande was particularly inspiring to me but each item has been chosen because it has valuable perspective and information.
All I could think this morning when Bob said his directive was still unsigned was saying that the shoemakers children don’t have shoes. How could it be after nearly two years of this topic being a major focus for me that Bob still hasn’t completed his updated directive!?! Well, the fact is that thousands of Vermonters have not completed their directives. Bob said he hadn’t gotten two people as witnesses … interesting. Anyone who knows you can be a witness- two neighbors – two friends. There are dozens of reasons why people don’t complete their directives. If you haven’t completed yours I’d truly welcome hearing why.
Do you know that you can write in your advanced directive that you want absolutely every possible procedure to keep you alive? The directive simply states what you want. No matter what your wishes – it’s an advanced directive and lots of good solid discussions with your loved ones that will make it possible for your wishes to be carried out if for any reason you can’t speak. Otherwise those around you have to guess which can cause untold stress and sometimes conflict for partners, families, or anyone caring for you. p.s. I sure hope that very soon Bob will have joined those who have completed and registered their directive! You too!