Fandango’s Provocative Question

There are some questions that are rarely asked because the emotions that they stir up can be almost unbearable and because they cannot help but completely divide opinion. That said, these are often the questions that should be asked because they provoke discussion and, however unpalatable these discussions may be they are necessary if the human race is to continue to move forward. For that reason, I’ve decided to try and answer the incredibly provocative question posed by the fearless Fandango.

There are some questions that are rarely asked because the emotions that they stir up can be almost unbearable and because they cannot help but completely divide opinion. That said, these are often the questions that should be asked because they provoke discussion and, however unpalatable these discussions may be they are necessary if the human race is to continue to move forward. For that reason, I’ve decided to try and answer the incredibly provocative question posed by the fearless Fandango.

Do you believe that terminally ill people should be allowed or encouraged to end their lives via physician-assisted suicide? If so, under any circumstances or should there be restrictions? If not, why not?

My first response to this is to ask another question: If your family pet was dying, visibly suffering and the vet had told you there was nothing they could do what would your reaction be? You knew that, if you did not take action, your beloved cat or dog would face the rest of its life in pain and anguish…what would you do? For most of us, although it may break our hearts we would ask the vet to put the animal to sleep, to end its suffering. How is it then that we do not afford the same kindness to our fellow humans?

Almost 5 years ago, I watched my husband die from esophageal cancer which was complicated by secondary cancer in his liver. I watched him suffer when the doctors put cameras down his throat, he was sedated but told me that the process was agony. I was with him on the day that they decided to operate on his esophagus, a major and frightening procedure. They opened him up and then found the secondary cancer so they woke him up from the anesthetic and, while he was still groggy, told him that the operation would not go ahead and that there was nothing more they could do for him. That was his death sentence, it was delivered with little compassion and it broke my husband’s heart because he knew that he would be leaving this World and everyone in it that he loved. Worse than this, he knew that he would die in considerable pain.

I fought to find him a place in a hospice because I couldn’t bear the treatment that he received in hospital. I don’t want to go into detail because I don’t want to relive the memories but no-one deserves the mental and emotional cruelty that he suffered in the name of ‘treatment’.

Cancer is the most awful disease. It is cruel. It robs people of their dignity, it strips the flesh from their bones and leaves them as shadows of their former selves, in pain, connected to machines, drips, tubes all designed to keep them in their suffering for as long as possible. For what? For who?

A few months before his death I was asked to sign a ‘do not resuscitate order’ and, although I couldn’t bear the thought of saying goodbye to the only man I’d ever loved, I didn’t hesitate because watching someone you love slowly taken apart by this terrible disease is far worse than letting them go. What is it they say about if you really love someone you’ll let them go….?

One of the things that I will always feel guilty about is not spending 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with my love before he died. In films or on the TV it’s always like that isn’t it? The relative sleeping in a chair beside their loved one’s bed, holding their hand, not leaving, eating or even changing their clothes but real life isn’t like that or at least it wasn’t for me. I couldn’t or wouldn’t accept that my husband was going to die. Of course, I knew on an intellectual level but I wouldn’t believe it because the thought was too awful to bear. So I visited every single day, for hours at a time, but I also carried on with my life because, in my head, that which I knew to be inevitable could never happen.

This went on for several months, my husband suffered, I suffered, his family and mine suffered, it was prolonged, torturous and unnecessary. If my love had been given the option to end his life with a morphine overdose I believe he would have taken it just to put an end to, what had become, a miserable existence; it could really be called a life any longer. If he had made that choice I like to think that I would have supported him in his decision because it was his to make.

When I spoke to one of the hospice nurses after my love had left this World she said that his death had been ‘difficult’, basically, he had suffered. The really awful part of this was that I was not there with him, he was alone with a nurse, a very caring woman but not someone who loved him; don’t we all deserve to be with someone we love when we die?

If medically assisted suicide was allowed I could have been there, he could have been surrounded by the people that he loved at a time and place of his choosing and not at 2am, in a hospice with a kind nurse the only person there to hold his hand. I know that people will say that the processed could be abused, the lawmakers fear that assisted suicide could become murder or that people who would otherwise go on to recover, especially from mental illness, will take their own life but it is their own life isn’t it? The human race is happy enough to kill, many places still have the death penalty, we start wars over territory or religion, we maim and murder for pleasure or profit and yet we balk at the idea of allowing someone to take their own life. Why?

The grief that I have suffered and still suffer following the death of my beloved husband would be no different had he died as he did or through medically assisted suicide. The pain would not be lessened but the guilt would have been because I could have been there with him.

We put animals to sleep, when they are suffering, in the name of kindness and compassion, it’s through noble intent. We condemn those who hurt animals or treat them badly because animals like cats and dogs can’t really fight back against the mighty human AND YET we allow our fellow humans to go through far worse in the name of ethics. Why?

To finally answer Fandango’s question: I absolutely believe that people should have the right to end their suffering through assisted suicide if they are terminally ill.

Lisa

x

 

FOWC: Metamorphosis

“Can she hear us do you think?” The voice was strained and anxious

‘Yes, I can hear you but I can’t see you; where are you? Where am I?’

“Doctor, it’s been 3 months, do you think that there’s any chance at all now that she’ll recover? Please be honest” The plea was desperate, there was naked longing in the voice which cried out for an answer, any answer.

“Can she hear us do you think?” The voice was strained and anxious

‘Yes, I can hear you but I can’t see you; where are you? Where am I?’

“Doctor, it’s been 3 months, do you think that there’s any chance at all now that she’ll recover? Please be honest” The plea was desperate, there was naked longing in the voice which cried out for an answer, any answer.

‘Who are they talking about?’ There was no fear, there was nothing to fear in this place but she was curious

‘You’ The word was a gentle sigh that softly touched her cheek

Standing before her, bringing a subtle illumination to the darkness was the shape of a man; she couldn’t quite call him a man as he had a fluidity that does not exist within the human realm but he had a male presence. She was reminded of her Father. There were no clear features that would bring her to this conclusion but she felt a sense of belonging that enveloped her.

‘Why? There’s nothing wrong with me’ She was indignant, she felt healthier than she ever had in her life; her body had a lightness to it that she’d never experienced before. She was sure that she could run all day without tiring in the slightest. She smiled; it was a wonderful thought. As it entered her mind a field unraveled before her eyes; bright golden corn raised up before her, she could smell the damp earth as if it were soaked with summer rain. In the distance there was a glade of trees and the light from the sun played between the branches, illuminating, in turn, bright green leaves and the mossy floor beneath.

“I’m sorry but there really is nothing more that we can do, I’ll leave you to say your goodbyes and then we’ll shut down the machines…….” The words were delivered with a gentle compassion but with an unequivocal finality.

‘It’s time’ The soft tones of her Father’s voice reached her ear. Was it her Father? How could it be? She’d lost him so many years ago…….but…….

She turned her face away from the swaying corn and the seductive play of light in the glade and turned to face the being that bathed her in such subtle surety.

‘Time for what?’ She turned her head back to the trees that seemed to be calling her; the lightness that she’d felt before was almost overwhelming her and a place between her shoulder blades was tingling.

“Goodbye my love” The voice broke, the words, unwilling to be formed, stuck in the man’s throat.

She turned towards the voice but could see nothing; there was a deep desire within her to run towards it but the glade called to her, pulling her, the very earth was seducing her with its soft warm smell..

‘Please don’t be sad, not for me. Goodbye’

As the word hung in the air for a brief moment she had a strange sensation; something was erupting from within her and it brought with it power, a freedom that was entirely new to her. From the corner of her eye she could see brightness unfold as gossamer fine wings appeared and gently bore her away from the ground and towards the sunlit glade.

‘What’s happening?’ Did she care? Really? Such peace!

‘This, my daughter, is your final metamorphosis. Come’ He held out his hand and guided her towards the light….

Thanks once again to Fandango for providing the inspiration for this story with his daily one word prompt.

Lisa x

 

Falling

Falling

A slow ascent

Rising

Gentle descent

Falling

A slow ascent

Rising

Gentle descent

Reaching

For the ground

Searching

Heaven beneath

Finding

Purgatory

Climbing

Always lower

Touching

Stars underfoot

Feeling

You. Here but lost.

Sometimes poems just need to come out…….

Lisa x

Hold on……..

I’m so afraid. 

If I let go I’ll drop

I don’t know how far 

Because I can’t look down

I’m so afraid.

If I let go I’ll drop

I don’t know how far

Because I can’t look down

Is there something there to break

My fall. You say it’s safe, you tell me to

Let go! What do you see that I don’t

Can you see the chasm beneath

The single step to freedom

I can’t see, I don’t know

So stop telling me

I have to let go

Of the past

Lisa x

What Will Be Left?

One day you will be gone, to ashes or dust

Your short time over, finished, no mess, no fuss

All you will leave in your place is memories

One day you will be gone, to ashes or dust

Your short time over, finished, no mess, no fuss

All you will leave in your place is memories

I have one question, I beg you, listen please

For all those who love you, won’t see you again

Will the memories be happy or nothing but pain?

I have written this for two bloggers who may or may not realise that it’s for them. I’m not going to tell you who they are as their stories are not mine to tell but they touched me and this simple poem is for them, written with love and sympathy.

Someday, someone will have to live with nothing more than memories of you, please make them happy ones.

Lisa

x

 

For You………..

I know that there are many of you out there in Wordpress land who are grieving for the loss of someone dear to you. I know too that, sometimes, grief can make you feel very, very alone; you’re not. This song is for all of you because I know that you will understand……

I know, from reading your posts, that there are many of you out there in WordPress land who are grieving for the loss of someone dear to you. I know too that, sometimes, grief can make you feel very, very alone; you’re not. This song is for all of you because I know that you will understand……

I picked up your shirts this morning
I don’t know why, I don’t know why
Mr Reynolds said to say hello
I started to cry, I started to cry
Every place we ever walked and
Everywhere we talked, I miss you
You never leave my mind
So much of you is left behind
You took my days with you
Took my nights with you
Those unfinished conversations
We used to have still speak to me
And I write you letters every day
That I’ll never send and you’ll never see
All this wishful thinking
Gets me nowhere I can’t stay
Though my heart is broken
It keeps breaking every day
You took my hopes with you
Took my dreams with you
I keep thinking that you’ll be calling
Everyone says that it’s all in my head
And I can’t accept it yet
I’m not ready to just give in
I know that I can’t live in this pain
With these feelings of regret
I can’t comprehend this
And pretend that I don’t care
Any place I wanna be
I wanna see you there
You took my life with you
Took my world with you
I first heard this song last night on some sort of talent show compilation that I was watching on YouTube (what? I was bored) and I played it over and over. This morning I decided that I wanted to share it so I tracked down where it came from and found this video; I’d like to say it’s the first cartoon that’s made me cry but it’s not………
To be honest, I’m not sure why I need to say this now, today, but I do:
You’re not alone
Lisa
x

Devil’s Advocate…….

Years of  imprisonment, mental and emotional torture carried out on a daily basis before finally murdering a man in cold blood. There is no remorse from any of the perpetrators and they believe that they have every right to do what they have done. Do you think that they deserve the death penalty for their crimes?

A man held in a darkened room

His tormentors ever watchful

Playing games with his fragile mind

They dangle hope before him

Will freedom come before death?

These words repeated over. Days

Weeks, months, never ending

Torture exquisite, intentionally refined

Years in debilitating isolation

Hope and death the only constant

The first is lost, his captors proclaim

Holding him down, the waiting crowd

Leans forwards. Morbid fascination

Sustained and fueled by righteous anger

The terror in his eyes shines bright

But there is no reprieve. We are right

They say and, with that, his light goes out………

Years of  imprisonment, mental and emotional torture carried out on a daily basis before finally murdering a man in cold blood. There is no remorse from any of the perpetrators and they believe that they have every right to do what they have done. Do you think that they deserve the death penalty for their crimes?

What’s described here IS the death penalty. Is it ever deserved?

What do you think? I’d love to hear from you.

Lisa

x

 

 

 

Fear

Vile and loathsome creature, take your claws from my gut

Let go your hold. Leave me to walk alone, without you

Pulling me back, holding me close, whispering, despicable

Forcing my mind wide open to pour in foul imagery

Vile and loathsome creature, take your claws from my gut

Let go your hold. Leave me to walk alone, without you

Pulling me back, holding me close, whispering, despicable

Forcing my mind wide open to pour in foul imagery

You deplete strength, hope, will, leading me ever closer

To the edge. You push my thoughts, my body too far

You hold my hand, tight, but with cajoling, sweet voice

You await the moment, the final introduction, hello

Goodbye. You are merely the plaything, the precursor

To your master Death. You torture, he watches and waits

There is no joy in you, no frail link to those you torment

You are nothing. You have no purpose, no reason to be

And yet I continue to feed you, the beast that you are

Your cold breath on my spine, I want to beat you, begone

You are familiar, twisted friend. So many years together

Fighting. Why won’t you leave me? Please don’t leave me.

 

Lisa

x

Break Over Me….

You entice me with your power and force

You undulate, gentle but oh so strong

I long to fall, roll and revel with you

You entice me with your power and force

You undulate, gentle but oh so strong

I long to fall, roll and revel with you

I speak not of love but the sea, of course

You beckon me with such a subtle song

Dark azure water, moving, ever new

Take me to your depths, I will come freely

Give myself to you, stay with you, forget

Walking into your cold embrace, easy

I speak of love, still not forgotten yet

But lost. I will come, lie with you. Free me.

I watch the sea from my apartment every day; the way it changes colour depending on the weather, the way it moves, I’ve seen its power but I’m always calmed in its presence. In reality, I would never give up my life to the sea but I can understand those who do and this was written for them.

Lisa x

 

Keep It Inside…..

That beast you feel, locked deep within

Shredding your soul with casual contempt

Force it back though it sears your skin

From inside. Tearing pain with each attempt

That beast you feel, locked deep within

Shredding your soul with casual contempt

Force it back though it sears your skin

From inside. Tearing pain with each attempt

At freedom. It begs release with silent roar

Climbing higher with vicious blind intent

Hold tight, keep it back with all strength in your core

Though it promises no more than sad lament

How can you trust this creature built of pain

Who claws at your throat, again and again

The beast is strong, it surges, ready to fly

Too hard, no more,  let it go

And cry….

Lisa

x