What Do You Wished You Had Known Before Witnessing The Death Of A Loved One?

Recently, a video by @hospicenurseulie, a hospice nurse who educates about death and dying, went extremely viral for teaching people about the actively dying phase, which is the last phase of life.

Hospice nurse Julie's video where she shows what the last phases of life look like
@hospicenursejulie / Via tiktok.com

Julie discussed symptoms someone in the actively dying phase might experience that may look scary, but are completely normal — like the death rattle, the "rally," and "fish-out-of-water" breathing.

Julie admitted that most people she sees are scared of death and dying, so by educating about the final stages of life, we can better be there for ourselves and our loved ones.

Hospice nurse Julie saying that the more educated we are about end of life care, the better we can be there for our loved ones in a video
@hospicenursejulie / Via tiktok.com

Julie's insight helped millions of people understand the last phase of life — but now I wanted to know from you — if you witnessed the last moments of a loved one, what's something you wish you would have known beforehand?

For me, witnessing the loss of my grandma, I assumed that she was in a ton of pain once she was in hospice since she was no longer getting intensive care, which made me fearful and stressed. Later, after she passed, I learned that many of the symptoms she was having were quite normal, and weren't actually causing her pain.

kids hands holding the hand of someone in a hospital bed
Staticnak1983 / Getty Images

Maybe for you, you witnessed your loved one go through a "rally" — where they started walking around and talking like their old selves — only to be devastated days later when they passed. You thought they were getting better, and you wish you had known then what end-of-life rallies were.

A senior woman of 85 years old embracing her daughter with emotion
Manonallard / Getty Images

Perhaps for you, you were in "caretaker" mode for your loved one for a while, so you were mostly prepared for end-of-life care. However, you were not prepared for the feeling of grief that would follow. You thought your loved one passing was something you could pre-process and move forward from, but you realized grief doesn't really go away, it just shapes and molds into different forms.

Closeup shot of two unrecognizable people holding hands in comfort
Peopleimages / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Whatever it is you wished you had known before your loved one passed — let me know in the comments or by using this anonymous form. Your responses could help others who are facing a similar situation in an upcoming BuzzFeed Community post.