Firstly may I say that I do not trivialise the issue of dying. Having enjoyed near perfect health, last year I was struck down with a rare condition. My illness is terminal and has left me seriously disabled. To make things worse I had my first and only child last year. I have a wonderful husband (God blessed me with him)but the truth is that my daughter will be motherless.
Now I know time is short there are a million things I both have to and want to do? Build a snow-person (politically correct)with my baby is just one of them.
As this forum develops I'll share more of mine with you.
Really sorry to hear about your illness Jan. If I was given the date I would probably borrow as much money as I could, before seeing as much of the world as I could before I became too ill. If I had a child, which I dont, it would be a different story.... it would probably focus more on doing as much for and with the child as I could before dying e.g. going to disneyworld or lapland etc etc.
I don't know if this would help you but I would think about video taping a message to my loved ones to be played after I was no longer around. And if I had a child I would put together a special tape for that child telling him or her things about me they might like to know as they grow up. I would try not to make the tape to the child too sad. I would try to fill it with memories of good times. I would even try to thrown in humor which may sound strange but it would be something I would like the child to consider as a strong part of life and, well, my life.
Very sorry to hear about your illness, and i hope everything goes well for you and your family in the future.
I commend you on your courageous outlook and desire to make the most of your time. I have known a few people that have had terminal illnesses. It has changed the way i look at life. Being given an end date is a double edged sword. There is the fear and sadness to deal with along with the push to live to the fullest. None of us, no matter how seemingly healthy, are promised tomorrow. If only all the world would live like our days are numbered (which they are) and seek happiness and pleasure rather than power, greed, and war, this would be quite a different world to live in.
In answer to your question, (a very good, thought provoking one!)If I knew when my last day would be, I would ride my horse each day that I could, walk with the dogs, spend as much time out in nature as possible. My last day would be spent with my family in a forest amongst the trees, birds, and other life affirming creatures. And if I had a choice I would end it all by kissing my family goodbye, telling them how very dear they are to me and throw myself off the most beautiful waterfall and enjoy my last view on the way down. Morbid to some, I know. But I've actually thought about this subject.
Your daughter and husband are blessed with a wonderful woman and role model in you. Thank you for sharing your situation with us and allowing us to ponder how we will spend our own time here. May your journey be enlightening and with ease.
I think the circumstances would make all the difference. In your situation I would think I would want to do as many things as a family as possible. Your baby may not get to have you growing up but they can have pictures and stories told about the fun stuff you did during your last days. I am not sure how old your baby is but there are some real fun activities you can do with infants such as swimming. Your child may just associate something like swimming with the love you have for them when they are older. It's not an easy situation you are in . My heart goes out to you.
Thank you for your heartfelt thoughts. Lorena is a very inquisitive 19 month old. For development reasons health visitors take 3.5 months off her age because she was very premature, not that you'd know that looking at my busy, cheeky toddler.
You're right about the fun stuff. I'm in enormous pain and use a wheelchair to get by, but that doesn't stop me from having the most fun wih her. Vanity has prevented me from having my photo taken with her (I have bells palsy too - my facial distortion meant that even my own mother didn't recognise me at first). I also take a high level of steroids each day - The drug Predisolone is the wonder drug but cushingoid appearance is a side effect (it's not pretty. Perhaps the support here will help give me the courage to take that photo - as I write I realise how silly it is to be vain in the circumstance.
One again thank you - this is the first time I've mentioned my illness here and I'm overwhelmed at the support.
Again my heart goes out to you! I know we have never met and this is probably the first time we have chatted on the forums here but I wish there was something I could do for you
What you are going through takes more strength then I think I could muster and I wish all the best for you and your family.
G Miah - your kind thoughts are well received. Thanks for the support - don't worry I won't become a blubbering mess - It's amazing how strangely liberating it can be to know ...
I will write a hub about my illness because to be frank it's downright strange or is it the methadone mushing my brain? Sorry to go off on a tangent but I spent two months in the 'lovely' London Hospital in Whitechapel. My consultant is one of the top neurologists in the world. When he first prescribed methadone to help with the pain, I was like 'oh nooo I'm not a junkie'. The pain won and I was chucking that green stuff down my neck like it was Dom Perignon (oh dear how the mighty fall)
Ryankett - you're right about borrowing money - give the bankers a taste of their own medicine - I don't mean to insult anyone in banking but even you guys must admit your serious shortcomings :-) So now I've got to recalculate what I'd do knowing I'll be clutching wads of filthy lucre in my sweaty palms ... so much damage to do, so little time ...
Of course Lorena comes first - that's the painful thing knowing she won't have a mother.I've threatened the hubby with hauntings, visitations and poltergeist activity should he even consider giving her a step-mother. Actually there is someone I would like him to marry. She's single, honest and kind. She'd be a great wife and I trust her to care for my daughter. So perhaps that's another thing I'd do - a bit of match-making.
Thanks again you guys!
Just be sure that your actions financially do not leave your husband liable, always good to check that out. If you are going to borrow 20k, and have 20k to your name when you pass away, the banks would be getting their money back If you have cash in your name now, I would look into transferring tax free 'gifts' to your husbands account (there are restrictions in place for this). If you then plan on borrowing money (I know people that have done this) without the intention of paying back before death - then you need to ensure that your liabilities for each seperate loan are not transferred to your partner. Some do state this in the T&Cs and some do not
Susiewrites - I felt a restfulness come over me as you described your last day - how very beautiful - really beautiful. Thank you for sharing.
Jan, I know you're devastated, but don't completely give up hope. I've had two friends who had miraculous cures. It does happen!
Jan I really am so sorry to hear about your illness. I will be praying for you.
Sorry you are going through this experience, too.
One thing that brings me peace -
I have journals for my hubby, son, mom, etc. Everyday I write the things we don't take enough time to say. I add photos and momento's of things we have done. It helps me feel like I have extra "I love yous" to give them when I am gone. That's what I do on those nights I can't sleep.
Hope it wasn't too morbid.
Jan you can email me if you want.
Oh my goodness - now I'm blubbering - YOU'RE SUPPORT IS OVERWHELMING. You guys are the best - I found HuB by accident and it's the best accident I've ever had. I really wasn't reaching out expecting support but having received such kind and friendly messages I feel more alive than for a long time. You're all FANTASTIC!!!
HOLLY - I'll definitely be in touch.
TONY - prayers are my fortress - bless you.
HABEE - you are kind and sweet - I won't give up!
ROD - I think you're write a video can catch what a letter and a photo sometimes miss.
My husband has just walked into the bedroom and taken a look - he say's he didn't know it was possible to find such support from strangers - he's so touched by the kindness shown.
Jan, after reading your post to my hub, I am very happy to see you have started this thread. I am sure it will continue to be a source of comfort and strength for you as you use your amazing courage to keep your positive disposition.
To try to answer your question. I think I would first set aside time to decide what I could do for myself to make me happy, then what I could do for my family to leave them with positive memories of the time you've shared.
The first instinct is to be totally selfish, but there truly is more happiness in giving then there is in receiving, so while I looked after my own needs, I would put forth effort to consider the needs of my family and friends, giving them time and attention that they will cherish long after I've departed.
I would most importantly leave them the most active memories of me that I could. It would mean swallowing any traces of vanity, since none of us eagerly pursue taking pictures and videos when we do not look our best. However, for those who already see you everyday and look past your outward appearance and love the inner you, the spirit you display and the love you show, they will appreciate having images of you as they remember you right now. It will aid them in the healing process they will have to undergo at a later time. I would want my family to have such treasures, especially of me just being me. I would also intersperse comforting words and encouragement with which ever images I collected or participated in.
Last but certainly not least, I would build myself up spiritually, to give myself the hope of the truth that comes from above. I would make sure to stay in touch with my spiritual family to receive their loving care and encouragement as well.
I hope your virtual family will be able to play an ever increasing part in supporting you, Jan. Love, happiness, laughter and genuine caring greatly improves the quality of life for everyone, but especially for someone in your position. I for one will be happy if I get a chance to know you better and support you more in the coming days.
Wow I'm sorry to hear about your illness, and I will also be praying for you and your family. And like they say, don't give up because miracles do happen. Even if the doctor says tomorrow will be your last day, only God knows. And I would take my family out to the country side, or anywhere away from the city and spend time there. It can be so peaceful and relaxing.
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