USA, April 24, 2023 (Commonwealth Magazine, by Paul Lauritzen): In April 2018, my wife of thirty-eight years died from complications of ovarian cancer. During her three-year ordeal, it seemed that every twist and turn of the disease could be predicted by a lab value or framed in terms of a statistical probability. Right up until the end. In her last days, it was not blood work or vital signs that foretold her death. It was a dream. If that sounds strange, it is because our society mostly shuns death and consequently knows little about dying. At the time, I certainly knew little about the process of dying. Of course, I knew that the treatments Lisa was receiving were not working, but her doctors never spoke of how she would die or how close to the end she was. Only when she entered hospice were we told that she probably had weeks to live, not months. Thus, when she was admitted overnight to an in-patient facility to get control of symptoms we were not able to address at home, I was unprepared for the conversation I had with the hospice physician the next morning.

In my wife’s last days, it was not blood work or vital signs that foretold her death. It was a dream. “Medically,” Dr. D said, “Lisa is much better. Her vital signs are strong, and she is not experiencing any nausea. This is the good news. The bad news,” he continued, “is that your wife called the nurses in the middle of the night to say that she saw her parents on a boat outside the window beckoning her to come. I know this may not make sense,” he went on, “but we see this repeatedly in our patients. When patients report a vision like this, they almost always die within a day or two. I’m so sorry.” My wife died a little more than twenty-four hours later.

Much more on end-of-life dreams and visions (ELVDs) at source.