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Final Journeys: A Practical Guide for Bringing Care and Comfort at the End of Life
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Final Journeys: A Practical Guide for Bringing Care and Comfort at the End of Life

4.37  ·  Rating details ·  246 Ratings  ·  33 Reviews
For more than two decades, hospice nurse Maggie Callanan has tended to the terminally ill and been a cornerstone of support for their loved ones. Now the coauthor of the classic bestseller Final Gifts passes along the lessons she has learned from the experts—her patients. Here is the guide we all need to understanding the special needs of the dying and those who care for t ...more
Paperback, 352 pages
Published March 24th 2009 by Bantam (first published March 25th 2007)
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Shari Larsen
The author of this book has been a hospice nurse for over two decades, and in this book, she passes along the lessons she has learned from the patients she has cared for, and their families. She shares their stories with honesty, compassion, and at times, with humor. She empowers patients and their families to face the time of dying with less fear, less pain, and more control; her stories illustrate how to meet the physical, emotional, and spiritual challenges faced at a such a difficult time.

Strongly recommended for anyone experiencing a loved one's terminal illness. Based on Callanan's 20+ years of hospice work this book is full of meaningful insights and wisdom.
Irene Allison
Sep 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: death-and-dying
My goodness what a wonderful, heartfelt, informative and beautiful book about one of life's greatest mysteries: the human reality and experience of dying.

How lucky we are that the author's father suggested that because we all need help in understanding the dying journey his palliative care nurse and daughter should share her wisdom. The result? A profoundly helpful and deeply human book and a gift to everyone facing this part of our shared journey.

During the recent dying of a loved one, I found
Tyler Staples
Inspiring at times, self-absorbed at others. This author loves playing savior, and it shows so I’m her writing.
Jan 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Maggie Callanan, along with Patricia Kelley, wrote “Final Gifts”, a groundbreaking book about how people die. “Final Journeys” is a companion book and focuses on the care giver’s role and how they can best help the dying and take care of themselves at the same time. She explains how entering hospice care is not ‘giving up’, what paperwork the dying (which is all of us, really) should have completed to make things easier for themselves and their loved ones, that it’s okay for the dying and the fa ...more
Oct 19, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Just like Maggie Callanan's other book Final Gifts Understanding the Special Awareness, Needs and Communications of the Dying this book was well written and sensitively presented. We all will face dying at some point, no one is immune, and if you have any questions about what "the final journey" might be like I would suggest this book. Warning: have a box of tissues close by. I lost my significant other in 1995 to pancreatic cancer, he had just turned 45 (I was 43). Up until that time I had not ...more
Sep 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a must-own book because one reading will not give the full impact of all the wisdom contained in Maggie Callanan's imminently practical guide to the one sure journey of life.
The book has been carefully planned with clear sections which each contain valuable advice on how to deal with various aspects of dying. Although this book is primarily aimed at caretakers, even those of us in robust health can learn a little something about our own final journey.
What I particularly like about this b
Heather McLeod
Jan 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Heather by: Cowichan Valley Hospice
This is the best book I've found to date for anyone dealing with a terminal illness, and I strongly recommend it for anyone who is terminal, as well as their family and friends. It should be required reading for all medical professionals, and on the lending shelves of every library, hospice, cancer agency and medical facility.

The author is an experienced hospice nurse, and while she's writing from an American medical system, the issues and insights she details are universal.

This book was necessa
Aug 01, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What can I say? When the time comes we all could use a little insight. Comforting knowledgeable experiences shared by someone who's been dealing with the last stages of life for decades. I first read a book this author co-wrote several years ago when my sister Aurelia was dying called Final Gifts. It was given to me by my sister joyce. She said it helped her understand. So when Joyce was diagnosed this summer with advanced-stage cancer, I searched for it and found this book instead. It was writt ...more
Jul 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is an amazing book that makes the typically taboo subject of death and dying less scary. Maggie Callanan so gracefully addresses dying people and their families with such care and compassion. I hope when my journey comes to an end (nothing is wrong, but as she says, one out of one of us will die at some point in our life" ), I'll have someone like her guiding me and my family through the process. She is brilliant and must have a heart of gold!
Dec 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was just what I needed to read when my Dad was dying. It provided so much wisdom and comfort and guidance for me as I navigated his illness and death. He passed while I was reading it but I was able to skip to the end to continue to receive encouragement for the journey ahead. Thank you for writing an amazing book and for doing the important work of a hospice nurse. This is a must read for anyone with a loved one in hospice care.
Jan 21, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have read this book from cover to cover at least twice and have given away every copy I have purchased only to purchase it again, along with the second book on the same subject by this author.It has provided advice and guidance that has supported me through an unavoidable life experience and I think cope better in the days after.
Sue Klefstad
Jan 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a very helpful book, written by a hospice nurse with a sense of humor and a lot of love.

It explains the physical and psychological paths followed as someone dies, accompanied by surprisingly delightful anecdotes on the dying process. It provides answers to legal aspects and basic questions, such as forced feeding issues, yet maintains a positive attitude.
Sep 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I found this book the most helpful of the many that I purchased. The stories illustrated much more than the books that contained clinical descriptions of the practical and emotional processes surrounding death. I only wish that I had found this book sooner. The book addresses all of the end of life issues that I faced.
Jan 14, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who has a loved one with a terminal illness
Recommended to Jennifer by: a friend of our family
I read "Final Gifts" first and now this book. I have to say it truly is a practical guide to the death of a loved one and I think all of her anecdotes would be helpful to anyone who has a friend or relative with a terminal illness.

If a friend of mine finds herself in this position, I will absolutely recommend this book.

Rita Marunde
Jun 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I recommend this book to everyone. I wish I read this book in my late teens. I would have been so much more prepared for what came in my 20's. Death is inevitable for ourselves and our loved ones. Having knowledge of what to expect can help keep perspective and enrich the process.
Apr 10, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Christy by: Jana
This book really helped me process my grandmother's hospice care and passing. I started reading it the night before she died, but kept going because I found it helpful to read about others' experiences with death and end of life care.
Jul 26, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A great book for anyone facing a family member at the end of life. This normalizes the process and offers great strategies to help your loved one transition while helping you to handle the changes your family is facing. Please read it if you need it or before you need it.
Jun 11, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A friend loaned this to me. This is a must-read especially if you or a loved one is facing the end of their life, which we all will eventually. I wish I had this six months ago to read. The author is a hospice nurse and much of it is based on her experiences working with families.
Mar 12, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Extremely practical and helpful. This book was a great comfort to me in my father's final weeks. I read this author's Final Gifts first, which was very good too. This is the one I'll recommend to people helping someone with end of life care.
May 01, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this book for the first time when my grandmother was dying of cancer. Another great book by someone who has experienced the passing of many patients over the years as a hospice nurse. Another book I would highly recommend for families with a dying loved one.
Phil Lawless
Not quite as good as Final Gifts, but it adds years' more experience to relate. Any one with a family member in hospice should read this.
Jan 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A wonderful and practical book to help anyone facing the death of a loved one.
by the author of Final Gifts
Mar 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A beautiful must read for everyone. Sooner or later, everyone will need the wisdom Maggie shares.
Tracy Laverty
Feb 09, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I found this book an amazing comfort as we helped a friend through her final months. A must read for anyone with a loved one on their final journey.
Ross West
Feb 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Highly recommended. It provides excellent information and is written with warmth and care. A book to use and recommend to others.
Feb 24, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a great book for anyone interested in the dying process. Especially helpful for hospice workers.
Patricia Boyle
Mar 03, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Helpful advice for anybody facing the end-of-life experience.
Jul 26, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent advise & expectations at end of life. Practical information that should be read by all.
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