Now that my vacation’s almost over I’m beginning to feel great. Guess there’s a lesson in that somewhere. My e-mail problems have finally been fixed and I can go back to New York feeling good.
The Schindler family says that Terri’s end is near. Let’s hope that’s true.
I’m on vacation and using a public though cheap machine, so I can’t show the cites now but will be glad to when I get home and after I get myself to my doctor to see if sinus infection really has cleared up.
Terri’s on morphine, not because she’s feeling pain-if she is it’s vestige–but I truly doubt that she’s feeling any. She’s on morphine to make her parents and siblings feel better, and I’m for anything that will help them get through this.
I will always stand by what I have written about artificial hydration being the worst thing for a person without a feeding tube or any other way of eating. The reason people are always told to put “no artificial hydration” in their health care proxy and other documents is because drowning in your own fluids is the most painful way to die, if you’re at all cognizant. Terri passed that point a long time ago.
She is being given ice chips and her lips and mouth are constantly being moistened. If she can feel this will make her comfortable.
I have experience with people who chose to die without artificial hydration and nutrition. Somewhere in the Courting archives is an article I wrote for a national publication. One of the major players in that article is a woman who chose to die that way. Her daughters were in disagreement, and like most mothers, she only wanted them to get along.
She finally chose to go the no artificial hydration or nutrition route. As I wrote in that article, she perked up and became the person I had heard about for the final few weeks of her life.
She was very cognizant and had capabilities–I will get into what that means in a later article. She was satisfied with her decision. The woman was not uncomfortable at all; a nurse was constantly giving her ice chips and moistening her lips when she was parched. I was shocked to find out that she was parched less than I was watching her.
Before that experience I would have agreed with all of you who believe that withholding artificial hydration is horrible, but I saw it for myself, and it changed my view point, and maybe my life.
When my mom died not that much later I wished that I had the opportunity to feed her ice chips. But I didn’t.
I did learn the importance of siblings getting along and learning to sublimate individual desires for the sake of the parent.
Please if you learn anything from Terri Schiavo’s life and death learn that Advanced Directives should be in place a long time before anything happens.
Learn that family members must ultimate individual viewpoints, and respect the view of the patient.
Honestly I don’t know what Terri Schiavo wanted. But fifteen years is too long to live in a state of suspended life–life with only a brain stem working is no life at all.
One last point: many people are confusing “persistent vegetative state,” and “minimal brain activity” with a coma.
Many people now, are put into artificially induced comas so that they won’t thrash or hurt themselves while recovering from a traumatic injury.
When you hear about miracles, it’s not people in persistent vegetative states or minimal brain wave activity, that you hear about, it’s people who were in comas. If you think of a coma as the body and mind shutting down, it’s easier to understand.
Yes many people in comas, come out of them and require much rehab.. They’re the people who can go back and live a full life. People who are in persistent vegetative states or with minimal brain wave activity will never have that opportunity.
I was watching CNN this morning, and there was a poll where even Evangelicals supported Terri’s right to die.
The Reverend Falwell was trying to say that the poll was biased and the facts were presented wrong.
But they weren’t. They just weren’t presented to Reverend Falwell’s liking.
This might surprise you. I have two close Evangelical friends. I’m not against religion. I just don’t want people trying to force me to their beliefs. My friends asked me to explain the Terri case to them. If CBS or CNN or whoever had done that poll had questioned them they would have been two of the people to support Terri’s right to die without artificial hydration or nutrition.
On this Easter Sunday, I wish for Terri’s body to leave this earth and go to what I hope is a far better place.
Again I’m putting this Courting because I don’t think it should be political but philosophical, ethical and moral.
Again it’s raw. Again there are misspellings.
I wanted Courting to be a purely literary and fun blog.
But there are some things that are bigger than us; and Terri Schiavo’s life and death is.
Vaya con Dios, Terri.