“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming “Wow! What a Ride!” – Hunter S. Thompson
A friend of mine, well into her 80s, went into the hospital the other day with some blood clots. She decided against further treatment and meeting the local hospice at her home.
She had a good run.
All of a sudden, folks are wanting to share “quality time” with her and her husband.
Another guy I know is soon to be sending his wife in her 70s with advanced dementia into a memory care facility and wants to spend “quality time” with her.
What is “quality time”, anyway?
I was surprised to see that there are definitions for “quality time” mostly having to do with giving undivided and interactive attention to a loved one or kids.
There’s another definition for people at the ends of their lives. The hospice or memory care staff are very intentional about planning “quality time” for the patient such as pain management provided by medical staff and lifestyle stability by hospice staff for family and friends.
I think these two types of quality time get interchanged when it comes to visiting terminally ill people. The doctor who gave pain killers to Michael Jackson was he facilitating quality time?
I think, yes.
Not that it matters, but I don’t prefer the term.
I stopped by and visited. My friend was sedated, but awake and recognized me. Her husband, also rehabbing from a fall was his usual self, but stuck in his chair. He’s the guy I visited at the rehab center and was able to get himself sprung from there.
It was also a time to connect with others I haven’t seen in awhile. A couple of our mutual friends were there, too.
Quality time is all relative. It’s too bad a person has to be on their death bed to get visitors.
I wonder if they thought “Where were you when we were in better shape?”
For starters, I’ll be in touch with friends and family more regularly and I hope others will return the hospitality. I was in Cheyenne the other day and stopped over to see my aunt and 89 year old uncle who just got out of the hospital. He’s not in great physical shape but in good spirits.
He was a World War II vet and a member if the 442nd Regimental Combat Battalion.
wrote the other day about envisioning my future self making it to be 70 or 80. I think I’m more in tune with Hunter Thompson’s approach of skidding through life until all my tires are bald.
I’ll have to be pretty damn chipper if I want to see quality time in 2035!
Meanwhile, I found out today my 90-something year old aunt died in her sleep.
Getting old isn’t for wimps … I’ll have some of my ashes shot out of a cannon, like Hunter Thompson.