When my mom entered the hospice facility this week, the unspoken vision was perfectly clear: Reduce Mom’s suffering as much as possible; keep Dad from keeling over with exhaustion; fill the air with constant love; and eek out any joy we can.
The Power of a Shared Vision
I know you’ve had your unfair share of sad times too. No family can escape them. Just like you, we’re muddling through. I wrestled with whether to share my journey, but decided to go there, knowing that much learning comes from our darkest times. And so today, I offer some reflections on the power of vision in times of crises.
No doubt, Dad is in charge. But, Jill is a ninja in navigating the medical scene. When it’s time, she gently takes the helm.
Yesterday, Jane (who can run circles around Martha Stewart) ignored our exhausted surrender of “Let’s just get takeout for Easter,” and single-handedly cooked up a storm to make the day feel special. Ben and I took the video camera to their church and made a montage of personalized greetings from dozens of old friends against the backdrop of the choir singing the Hallelujah chorus. Brad took pics. The kids loved her with all their hearts and played as if the circumstances were perfectly normal.
A shared vision inspires people to use their gifts.
Turns out you can have an Easter Egg hunt in the hospice courtyard. Yes, you can drink Chardonnay out of hospital Dixie cups. (But, no the nurses don’t have a cork screw).
A strong shared vision inspires boundary pushing.
Willingness to Accept Help
When vision trumps ego, you’re willing to get whatever help needed to achieve your goal. Our family full of helpers is learning to say “Yes” to support we believe will make a difference.
A strong shared vision inspires receiving.
When the vision is clear, there’s less wasted communication. Direct, candid openness is key. Everyone needs to know the real deal to make the right decisions.
A strong shared vision inspires truth-speaking.
Willingness to Learn New Skills
We’ve learned the names of the meds and the impact of doses, along with clever ways to accelerate our learning. “That medicine’s easy to remember… you know how your sister needs a new van? I just think of it as add-a-van.”
A strong shared vision inspires learning.
Like every family, planning and execution is not always this smooth. I’m grateful that our shared vision is overpowering ego, personalities and pride.
It’s a strong reminder that during the toughest times in families, teams, communities or organizations, finding a shared vision is vital.
A strong shared vision makes the tough times easier.