The circle of love is an activity that is particularly beneficial to your loved one because he or she is present in the room and surrounded by those who love that unique person. It also provides an intimate setting for bonding and is very healing for family and friends. I have mostly seen this occur when families are surrounding the bedside during their final days, or as we call in hospice “the active phase”. Invite friends and family to circle around your loved one and share stories about him or her, much like the ones you would put in the memory box and include the values and morals that you learned from them as in the ethical will.
I have witnessed many families bonding during this time, many old wounds healed, and laughter…yes laughter! As your loved one is leaving their physical life, it is important for them to know and feel that their life was important, special, meaningful, and influential. It is also important for the family to rejoice in the life and times of the person you so dearly love. The experience you will have as you share, laugh, and cry will certainly be one of the most profound and memorable times in your life. Years later when you remember the death of your loved one, it is this loving memory that will shine and provide you strength and comfort.
Always remember the most symbolic and powerful impact you will have during this process of end-of-life is the love and affection that you will share. It is your loved one’s final days on earth and it is their time to shine – to be the center of attention, and to experience as much love and compassion as humanly possible to receive. Remember that your love and attention is the last gift you will be able to provide – make it special.