Friday, 13 May 2016

I am dying and I want everyone to talk about it

I am dying and I want everyone to talk about it This is a plea to my family, carer, doctors and specialists: start talking about death as much as you do about life. Is that too much to ask?

For 16 years I have known I’m terminally ill. I’ve had to come to terms with the fact I won’t grow old with my husband, or see my grandchildren become teenagers. I’ve seen my body change; I am slowly wasting away. I have faced the mental struggle of being told I’ve 18 months to live, only to see myself outlive the prognosis. I take 38 tablets every single day and rely on an oxygen tank to breathe. My spine is crumbling; I’ve shrunk by two inches. My skin is covered in painful psoriasis, and I have a growth in my stomach the size of a 30-week pregnancy.

And yet, despite this, my biggest challenge is trying to talk to you about the fact that soon, I will die. There’s something about death that people can’t face. We thrive on life; we celebrate it at every opportunity whether it’s a birthday or a christening. And yet, even though everyone who lives will die, death remains the elephant in the room. It’s a stigma, something we need to tiptoe around and leave to care professionals. Continue reading... The Guardian

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