21 "Please, Let Me Choose"

A short story.

Please, Let Me Choose.

A short story.

I remember when it all started. I was in my mid 50’s when I had my first real issue with my health and when I went to the doctors I was told that I had an incurable problem. When the doctor told me this, the first thing I asked was, “How long”. He said it was in the early stages and really couldn’t give me anything as far as how long I had ‘till my end would come.

I went home that day and did a lot of thinking. I thought about my kids and grand-kids that I hadn’t been very close to and some of which I hadn’t seen in quite some time. I thought about my girlfriend and how much we had missed together. The one thing I never wanted to do is be a burden to anyone. I am more afraid of that than I am of dying.

I knew at the time there was a lot of controversy about “The Right to Die” and I was hoping that by the time my time came that controversy would be settled. Now that time is getting closer and I am starting to feel the weakness and some pain coming on from the disease and I have to start making some decisions. I can’t ask anyone to assist me with this and I can’t wait until I’m to weak to do it myself and I don’t want to end it before I have to.

I just don’t understand why a person doesn’t have the choice about when they can end their time here on this earth. That should be my choice and my loved ones should understand and if they really love me they would realize that I am doing this for them as well as for myself.

If I don’t end it now, then they will see me suffer, which I don’t want. The doctors will do their best to keep me alive and “as comfortable as possible”, all the time making as much money as they can from the office visits, hospital stays and prescription drugs to “keep me as comfortable as possible” for as long as possible. And in the meantime I am suffering in more ways than just the pain from the disease. I have to see everyday the pity and sadness on their faces. I have to deal with the fact that when this reaches a certain point someone will have to go out of their way to take me to the doctors. Someone will actually put their lives on hold to take care of me. I don’t want any of that and I especially don’t want to help make some doctor richer just because I’m dying.

I understand that there are a lot of reasons for people being against this choice. But the simple fact is that this should be my choice as long as I am sound of mind and should be no one else’s decision, especially someone that doesn’t know me or my feelings or my background. I am not dying but this is how I feel and I want other people to know how I feel when it does actually come my time. Please remember this is a story. One that I think about all of the time.

I don’t believe that anyone should try to persuade someone to choose to end their life or make that decision for them. But I do believe that everyone should have the right to make that their own decision. The person should be able to make that choice of when, where and even how his/her life should end. The right to live and die with dignity should be available to everyone. I personally don’t feel very dignified knowing people look at me with feelings of pity and sadness and feeling sorry for me. I don’t want anyone feeling sorry for me. I lived a good life, and raised my children that turned out to be some fantastic and loving adults, that have some great children of their own. So, don’t feel sorry for me. Just allow me my dignity when it does come my time.

Greg

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Comments 22 comments

Wintermyst profile image

Wintermyst 5 years ago

I wish you the best. However, I want to add if people didn't love you they wouldn't be sad. You will be missed because you are loved.


gregas profile image

gregas 5 years ago from Corona, California. Author

Hi Wintermyst, thank you for the comment. Just for the record, I am not dying. Please go back and re-read paragraph 6. Thank you for your concern. I am sorry that I misled you. I was just writing a story that I hoped would touch someone's heart because I feel so strong about this subject. Greg


Wintermyst profile image

Wintermyst 5 years ago

LOL well sorry about that, great story though. I sort of walk the fence, I am not sure how I feel about it. I don't guess I am against it if someone wants to be in control of how they die. Well done


Beege215e profile image

Beege215e 5 years ago

I agree with your concepts totally. I wrote about my feelings on the subject much as you have done. I am not sick right now, nor dying. But I will choose when and where when the time does come. Good hub, interesting how you turned it into a fictional piece.


gregas profile image

gregas 5 years ago from Corona, California. Author

Hi Beege, after the first comment from Wintermyst, I didn't want people feeling that way. I Just want them to know how I feel. Thank you for your comment. It means a lot to me. Greg


JLSB profile image

JLSB 5 years ago

I really beleive that everyong should have the right to choose when they die. I don't know that I could ever do anything to end my own life, but I can understand when people are very very sick that they would. I hope I don't have to ever make that choice. I hope you don't either Greg. We never know what the good Lord will do.


Ghost32 5 years ago

Solid presentation, Greg. I know I'm clear on this: It's the individual's choice and none of my business...nor should it be the government's. Much of the stand against get-me-outa-here suicide stems, of course, from religious teachings that state it's against God's will. However, that pretty much adds up to an issue between the individual and God, eh?

I do believe in reincarnation and follow a teaching that explains it this way: If a person fails to make it through to the end without manually shortening the process, then part of a karmic lesson (or at least a bit of accrued karma from the past) is not in balance. In an ensuing life, the same lesson will return...with a bit more weight to boot. So there's that (if it's on target). But if ya can't take it, ya can't take it.

I did have a YOUNG (age 31) friend who offed himself some years back. His brother, about 6 months after the event, had a dream in which the suicide said he was taking classes (Suicide 101, I guess), was learning how and why things happened as they did, was feeling much better about the whole thing--and would soon be ready for another incarnation.

Presumably, he expected to be better prepared to face life in general that next time around.

Not preaching, just saying.


gregas profile image

gregas 5 years ago from Corona, California. Author

Thank you for your comment Ghost. I do respect and appreciate your comments. I wrote this because I have people have to deal with this subbject form both sides and suffer both ways. I personally don't believe in the here after or in life after death or reicarnation. That's all a matter of choice too. I don't have anything against those that believe in those things. Again, thank you. Greg


Sneha Sunny profile image

Sneha Sunny 5 years ago from India

all your hubs are great!!!!! loved all your hubs.....


roxanne459 profile image

roxanne459 4 years ago from Washington

You and I are of one mind on this issue! Thank you for putting this out there. It's very important for people to think about this seriously so they are able to make the right decisions for themselves.


gregas profile image

gregas 4 years ago from Corona, California. Author

Hi Roxanne, Thank you. I have thought this way ever since I would go with my Ex-wife to visit her father years ago and see some of those people in the homes just sitting there. I decided then that that isn't living. It is existing. When it comes my time, I don't want to just exist. It may be hard on the ones I am leaving at first, but in the long run it will be easier on everyone concerned. Greg


Paladin_ profile image

Paladin_ 4 years ago from Michigan, USA

With all the platitudes one hears regarding the "sanctity of life," it's important to remember that what we're talking about is more than mere physical existence (as you've pointed out). Genuinely cherishing life also means having respect for the right of everyone to make their own choices regarding their own lives.

Great hub, greg!


gregas profile image

gregas 4 years ago from Corona, California. Author

Hi Paladin, Thank you. I just know that time is coming in my life and I will do everything I can to make sure that I don't just exist. When I am no longer living, and just existing to breath and eat and cause other pain and problems, it is time to let go. Greg


KimberlyLake profile image

KimberlyLake 4 years ago from California

Good story. I agree people should have a choice to end there terminal pain and suffering voted up


gregas profile image

gregas 4 years ago from Corona, California. Author

Hi Kimberly, Thank you. To me it is all a matter of personal choice. Thank you for the vote too. Greg


KimberlyLake profile image

KimberlyLake 4 years ago from California

I have done some research on this subject, it is very interesting to me, a true rights issue. I have seen terminally ill family and friends euthanized by nurses administering enough medication to slow their heart rate and breathing down and eventually shut their bodies down. And the doctors and nurses know exactly how much it takes! Isn't this human euthanasia(or assisted suicide). I am 100 percent for it if the person is terminal and of sound mind when making the decision.


gregas profile image

gregas 4 years ago from Corona, California. Author

Hi again Kimberly, That is great under the right circumstances and if it is that persons wishes, as long as that person is still sound of mind or has it in a "living will" that those are their wishes. Otherwise the courts are going to look at it differently. Thank you again. Greg


WD Curry 111 profile image

WD Curry 111 4 years ago from Space Coast

The way we handle the end of life in our culture is weird! I have seen a lot here in Florida, It is like the elephant burial ground around here. The medical community has their specialty shops lined up like buzzards in their little part of town. I hope you have plan A. You will never straighten out the co-pay mess from plan B. I have already made my mind up to wander off when the time comes . . . Florida is a good place to do it.

So, when you here the “Silver Alert” about WD Curry 111 . . . old man with dementia . . . don’t worry. I just want to maintain some dignity on the way out. They can keep you alive past you time these days.


FordeAhern profile image

FordeAhern 4 years ago from Broadford, Co. Limerick. ireland

What a great story. I was glad when I realized it wasn't a true story. It would make you think that if you were in that position what you or your family do. I am voting up because I was really engrossed and so interesting in it. well done again.


gregas profile image

gregas 4 years ago from Corona, California. Author

Hi Chip, Thank you. Yes, our bodies are ours to do with what we choose, whether it is abortion, birth, life or death, it's ours. Greg

Hi Forde, Thank you and thank you for the vote. It is important these days to have a living will so it isn't so hard for family members to make the choive if and when the time comes. Greg


Iris Draak profile image

Iris Draak 2 years ago from Boise, Idaho

gregas, if you haven't seen it there is a beautiful documentary called "How to Die in Oregon". Oregon is one of only 5 states in the U.S. that allows for assisted suicide (of course it's only under certain circumstances, but it's a start). It is lovely and affirms life by allowing people to die in a way that is dignified and meaningful to them and to their families.


gregas profile image

gregas 2 years ago from Corona, California. Author

Hi Iris, thank you. I will check it out. I don't plan on going for awhile, but I have seen lives put on hold for so many and in a lot of cases that isn't what the older person really wants. I know I don't want ANYONE to put their lives on hold or go in debt because of me. Greg

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