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Wow. I can't even imagine having to make that decision.

And this has been going on for so many years for her...


I see patients and their families struggle with these decisions daily, and it is so hard. You are so strong and an awesome woman for doing what you did...You thought about her, and what she wanted. I always tell families, remember, it is about what the patient would have wanted, not what would make them feel better. I have dealt with it personally and profesionally, and it sucks.

Richard Ames

Well written Lisa.


I've said it before, but it bears repeating, I am so sorry you had to go through that, all of it. Those few years that everything came flying at you had to be so hard and heartbreaking. I wish we had been in touch then so I could have been there to help you even in some small way, hold your hand, make you dinner, bitch at the hospice lady, whatever.

I'm surprised and sorry to hear that hospice was such a problem for you. That's terrible, and goes against everything they are supposed to stand for. Hospice was a tremendous help to Dad when B was dying, and Dad and L were there full time. They still needed a lot of help, who wouldn't? That Patricia you had to deal with should never have had that job.

My Mom's been talking a lot lately about how she doesn't want to be left in that sort of a state. I keep telling her, she has to get it in writing in order to be sure and avoid any kind of fiasco such as the Schiavo case. There are four of us kids, and often we don't all get along or like each other very much, she can't just tell me and expect it to turn out that way. I do think about having to make these sort of decisions for my parents, as they are now in their 70's. They are in great health, and look much younger, but as B proved, that can change so quickly. And of course there's the issue of having the sort of father that refuses to go to the hospital after being hit by a car! And he has the nerve to call his father a stubborn old man.

Barbara V.

Dear Lisa,

Thank you for sharing your love and respect for your mother in this way. It was fortunate that she was able to express her thoughts and feelings to you. It was a blessing that you were there to listen and uphold her wishes. I relate in a very close way to what you have written, as well as to what a world your mother was to you. I'm thinking of you with love and understanding.


I agree with Richard---very well written in expressing your thoughts and feelings concerning your mother's right to die. I think Darr and Barbara's comments mirror any I would make, and thank them for sharing their thoughts and feelings with the rest of us. I don't think anyone ever truly knows what they would do unless placed in that situation, and you have my utmost respect for dealing with it, respecting your mother's wishes and doing so while facing your own breast cancer crisis. You are my hero. :)

Juan Schoch

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