End-of-Life Nurse Shares What People See When They Die

As humans, we have always been fascinated by the mysteries of death and what awaits us on the other side. While it remains a deeply personal and spiritual experience, there are common phenomena that have been observed by healthcare professionals working in palliative care. Julie McFadden, a hospice nurse based in Los Angeles, recently shared her insights into what many people experience when they approach death.

Understanding Visioning: What Happens When We Approach Death

According to Julie McFadden, visioning is a phenomenon where dying individuals believe they are communicating with their deceased loved ones. They may feel that their loved ones have come to guide them or that they are present in the room with them. This perception often brings comfort to those nearing the end of their lives.

While the exact reason behind visioning is still unknown, it is a common occurrence that Julie has witnessed throughout her extensive experience in palliative care. Patients often start to see their deceased relatives, friends, or even pets in the weeks leading up to their death. This phenomenon can begin as early as a month before the individual passes away.

Comfort in Connection: The Significance of Visioning

The prevalence of visioning in hospice care has led healthcare professionals to educate both patients and their families about this phenomenon. By providing information and reassurance, they aim to prevent unnecessary distress or alarm when visioning occurs. Understanding that these experiences are common and can bring comfort can provide solace during an emotionally challenging time.

Julie McFadden’s TikTok video on the subject garnered significant attention and sparked a wave of personal stories shared by viewers. Many individuals found solace in hearing that their loved ones’ experiences mirrored those described by Julie. They shared anecdotes of their own family members seeing and communicating with departed loved ones, providing further validation to the phenomenon of visioning.


@hospicenursejulie What dead relatives before you die. It’s called visioning, and it’s a normal part of death and dying. #hospicenursejulie #hospice #learnontiktok #visioning #educational ♬ original sound – ???? Hospice nurse Julie ????

Personal Accounts: Stories of Comfort and Connection

In the comments section of Julie’s video, numerous individuals recounted their own encounters with visioning. These stories offer a glimpse into the profound impact of these experiences:

  • “The last morning my mom was coherent she said she could already see my grandma, who died 42 years ago. In our culture, we believe our dead loved ones come to lead you. We know her mom was there ready to welcome her to the other side.”
  • “Yep! My mother-in-law was telling her sister that their mother was packing a suitcase for her trip and picked out a dress for her to wear.”
  • “Yep, I had a patient tell me his dog was on the end of the bed, told me a full description and name, and made his wife smile.”

These personal accounts not only highlight the prevalence of visioning but also underscore its significance in providing comfort and connection to the dying individual and their loved ones.

The Role of Healthcare Professionals: Navigating the Unknown

While visioning remains a mysterious phenomenon, healthcare professionals play a crucial role in supporting patients and their families during this process. By acknowledging the reality of these experiences and providing guidance, they can help alleviate any fears or concerns that may arise. Open and compassionate communication is key in ensuring that patients and families feel supported and understood during this delicate time.

The Spiritual and Emotional Dimensions of Visioning

Visioning is not solely a medical or scientific phenomenon; it carries deep spiritual and emotional significance as well. It offers glimpses into the bond between the living and the deceased and provides a sense of continuity and connection. For many, these experiences provide reassurance that their loved ones are waiting to guide them into the next phase of existence.

Embracing the Unknown: Finding Comfort in Visioning

While the exact nature of visioning remains a mystery, its prevalence and the comfort it brings to many individuals cannot be denied. As we navigate the complexities of death and dying, embracing the unknown and finding solace in experiences like visioning can offer a sense of peace. For both patients and their loved ones, the presence of deceased relatives and friends can bring warmth, love, and a sense of spiritual guidance.

Conclusion: A Window into the Journey of the Dying

The phenomenon of visioning provides a fascinating insight into the experiences of those approaching death. Julie McFadden’s observations as an end-of-life nurse shed light on the prevalence and significance of these encounters. While the exact nature of visioning remains elusive, its impact on those experiencing it is profound. By acknowledging and embracing these experiences, we can find comfort and connection in the face of the unknown, offering solace to both the living and the dying.


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