When I glance at the magazine counters in the grocery checkout line, I expect to see a Kardashian on the cover. Recently though, I came across a headliner that actually mattered.
Joey and Rory Feek are a country music husband-and-wife duo known by many for their singing and songwriting. Lately though, they’ve been making headlines for a different reason.
Last June, at the age of 39, Joey was diagnosed with an aggressive form of cervical cancer. She tried chemotherapy, radiation and surgery. Instead of continuing these invasive treatments, which she and her husband recognized would never end, she made a decision that all of us will have to make.
When faced with death, what do we want? In Joey’s case, she wanted to go home and spend meaningful time with her family. She wanted to be as pain free as possible, stop the invasive treatments and enjoy the rest of the life she had. As of November, she entered hospice care.
As Joey and Rory’s story makes headlines, they are highlighting how important it is to understand end-of-life wishes and end-of-life care, like hospice. In one publication’s coverage, Rory clears up some misconceptions about hospice. He explains that hospice doesn’t mean you’re in the final week of your life. Hospice is about living up to 6 months of your final days of life, the way you want to live them.
In America, when someone thinks about hospice, certain negative associations come to mind like death, a final push, last resort and even giving up.
Joey and Rory’s story is eschewing some of the uninformed negative connotations that surround hospice care and replacing them with positive ones—like, peace, planning, quality care and time spent with family.
Most likely, in the coming weeks or months, I will see another magazine cover or media outlet report that Joey Feek has passed away. Until then, I hope she is pain free at home with her family, a husband and daughter who love her. I also hope she recognizes that she has helped change the world and the way we think of hospice care.
You can read more of Joey and Rory’s story at www.thislifeilive.com.
Photo Credit: People Magazine