A Gift of Serenity

Recently a Canadian friend shared the experience of her husband's passing.

Faced with incurable illness and near total dependency, and after consulting two physicians, he decided to exercise his option to choose the date of his death. His firm intention and courage proved to be a loving, generous gift to his wife who was able to comfort and embrace him to the end. The serenity with which she told her story struck me as being in sharp contrast to the anger and anxiety that beset her a year ago as her efforts to look after him collided with his frustration and denial. Ultimately, they were able to face the truth together, and that made all the difference.


Joan comments: Anne, as you know, your story touches on a very difficult subject: people’s decisions about whether or not to end their lives in the face of incurable suffering.  This topic has been raised by audience members in question-and-answer sessions after nearly every public talk I have offered. 

An individual’s decision is surrounded by religious, social, and sometimes legal rulings.  Although we hear many compelling arguments on both sides of the issue, we rarely hear reports a year later from family members of how they feel after the sick person has chosen to die.  Thank you for sharing this report. 

If any other members of the Soul Support Community (you’re a member if you’re reading this post) would like to share their feelings if they have had a similar experience, we would be most interested to hear from you.