Would David choose Death with Dignity if he had the choice? He had a Brain Tumor and he knew the struggles the illness brought in the last days. He never feared death. The only thing he feared was us seeing it. And when I say us, I mean our children. He feared the personality changes the tumor would bring on. He feared the physical changes. He feared his kids seeing and remembering the last days of his life as ones of defeat. We communicated how we would shield them. How we would trust God to protect them.
I have watched the posts circuit facebook on Brittany Maynard and have sat quietly. They have brought about a lot of sadness. I see separation of people, I see judgment of many and I see God’s name being used in a way that follows with words of criticism. I see where the enemy has taken death and turned us against one another. I see a place where there is opportunity for love and instead it is hidden. I see the Bible made into a book of law and regulations instead of a place of love, grace and rescue. I see people compare their situations to Brittany’s when no situation is the same. No journey is the same. No story is the same. Through the conversations and the posts I have been asked.. what would we have chosen?
So our story……would we? Could we?
In our situation I believe David died with the most dignity. Not because he went through the natural process of dying. But, because he fought with faith. When you are told you will die at 43. When you are told you will not walk your child down the aisle. When you are told your parents will out live you. Can you still have faith? Can you still have trust? Can you still have hope in not what is in today but in what is in tomorrow? Can you believe in eternity? Can you fear and at the same time believe? Can you be hopeless but still live? Yes! And He did! And I believe that is the definition of dignity. Not how you die. But, how you live.
Easy way out?
There is no easy way out when you are dying. It is scary because our minds cannot comprehend the unknown. Even Jesus sweated blood because he was scared of dying. And he was perfect! For people to say Brittany took the easy way out or suicide is the easy way out……breaks my heart. My hopes are that instead we can show love and sympathy for those who are dying or those who have mental issues. Nothing is easy about it. There is nothing easy when you are faced with a terminal illness.
Even though we lived each day with hope and smiles, our journey was not easy. Each decision we made, we prayed. And sometimes we felt guided one way only to find God had us on a different path. My point being………. we didn’t always make the right choice. Isn’t that life?
The morning of David’s death he started morphine because of the pain. I was alone with him in the house for the first time. I believe he had already left his body. He was there…….. just not in his body. His body needed to die, but his soul was already alive. Even that beautiful thought does not make the day any easier. I was told the more morphine I gave him at shorter intervals the faster and easier it would be. It is a memory that I will never forget. Easy? I remember thinking there is nothing easy about this. No, we didn’t’ take a pill, but we made the process go faster. And it was not easy. But, it was easier than the later……… then to see him suffer any more. I remember begging God to take him. I could not emotionally handle seeing this strong man, daddy, friend and husband die the way he was dying. I knew God did not intend for this. I knew that God was right there by me, weeping with me and holding me through and I believe David was too.
Would David Had Chosen The Pill To End His Life Early?
Yes, I believe David would have. Not because he wanted dignity. He already had that. Not because he didn’t think he could handle dying. He could. But, because as a daddy and husband he wanted to protect us. Protect the kids from the personality changes he experienced of anger and confusion. His detachment and physical changes of weight gain, the night of falling, the days confined to bed…….. all the things he wanted them to not see.
Does that go with our faith?
Honestly……….I pray about it. It’s what I do when faced with any decision. I am reminded that this life is one of answers we are constantly searching for. That once we think we know it, we don’t. I am reminded that the Bible is not a set of rules and regulations. That it is instead God’s rescue plan. A place where he had a plan when we failed. A plan to make it so we would not be separated by death, but instead have eternal life because he sent his son Jesus. I am reminded that my purpose in this world is to not to Judge, but to love. And so I try as a believer to not put my two cents in. I can simply say what we would do in the same circumstances. I am not saying it is right, I am not saying it is wrong…..I am simply stating our journey.
I don’t believe it would have been easier to die this way. It would have still been just as hard. But, it would give David the chance to be the daddy and husband he wanted to be and protect us in any way……………..
Taking Steps By Faith,