My partner and I sat with mom on Christmas night. Although mom was weak and couldn't stand or sit up on her own she kept sitting up. I would ask "where are you going? She kept looking at one corner of the room and would often say "help me. At one point we asked if she could see the angels and her response was "oh, yes I do! We kept her comfortable with a cool cloth and a towel to hold in her hands.
We played soft music and held her hands and feet. Around she called out to her sister who had died 40 years before "oh, Margie, can't we go somewhere now? I told her it was time to go and that we would be okay. She died just before 10pm on Christmas night. What a holy night it was. It felt as if we had walked her to the gates of heaven. She died peacefully. After her body was removed from the house, I could still feel her presence.
As the family sat together I felt her spirit leave. I have felt her presence many times since then. She kept calling to someone to help her the angels? She didn't want our help. It was as if she was trying to get out of her body but couldn't quite figure it out. And the fact the someone else did come to get her was a true answered prayer.
My mom was a remarkable woman. She has visited me on several occasions since her death. I want to pull her story together and write a book someday. It is a good story to tell. Thanks for the opportunity to tell my story here. My grandfather was diagnosed with kidney cancer and kicked his cancer with fighting strength.
But it was from an infection he contracted at the hospital that placed him on his deathbed.
'It was a good death, the kind most people would choose'
For 12 days he didn't eat and laid in bed in coma-like state. I refused to see him like that as he was always so strong and wise. Our family was gathered at my grandparent's home for Hanukkah in I just completed my first semester at college. I was the only one who had yet to speak to him.
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But I had this strange feeling that I needed to go to see him. My grandmother walked me to the bedroom. His favorite song Rhapsody in Blue played in the background. I came to his side and let him know that everything would be okay with the family. I promised that I would do my best to look after everyone and that if he was ready to go, it would be okay.
I thanked him for all his wisdom and display of strength, that I would one day make him proud by working hard at my career and to always be a good and loving person. With one sigh, his heart stopped. He was gone. My dad said that my grandfather was blessed by my gift to set him free from pain. I had a hard time accepting that he chose me as the last one to see him go. I thought he would of left with my dad or his two siblings or my cousins. But today I know I was the one blessed by grandpa.
I was finally able to become more compassionate towards my mother when I witnessed her frailty for the first time, on her deathbed. My intention became to try making her imminent transition a less lonely, scary event. I owed her that and wanted to be there for her during this most sacred time. My mother was there with her love when I came into this life and now I wanted to be there for her, with my love, as she left it.
Even though it had been impossible for me for such a long time, I finally made her the priority again, over my own feelings.
I softened, and told her how much I had always loved her, even when I felt I had already lost her years ago. She was my mother and despite the bad, there was a lot of love between us over our many years together and the last 10 were only a small fraction of the over seven decades she had lived. She had meant so much to me as a child and now I started to remember that and be grateful for that and for her, and told her so.
Hearts can open and close in a single moment. I wanted to help her feel free to let go, let go of all the suffering and all that had caused her heart to harden. She deserved a break; it had been a long hard life for her. She had put up a good fight and had survived the casualties long enough. I soothed her, whispered to her, and talked about the spiritual beauty of death, of transitioning to a better place that would surely be filled with only love and acceptance.
She was aware that her children were there with her and I believe that gave her great peace. We did not desert her in the end. My sister, brother and I all pushed our lifetimes of personal issues aside and held hands as we prayed aloud for her until the final moment came. She had been struggling with her erratic, labored breathing until all of a sudden everything just stopped and she was quiet. She then smiled largely, as if someone she loved was greeting her with open arms, as though there was something or someone beautiful and comforting surrounding her with light, and then, she was gone.
It was an amazing, ecstatic experience. I was so happy for her, happy to have been witness to such a beautiful death experience and to have been there for her when it really counted. She was finally freed from her nightmare and allowed to return home. It is my tragic regret. We found out my best friend Shuggie had stage 4 lung cancer, they said she had 1 year and she died 10 days later. The day we knew something wasn't right, they took her to the hospital and told us it was just a matter of time.
They told us to go home and they would call us. I waited all night and the next day at noon because I still hadn't heard anything I rushed to the hospital. She had a breathing tube down her throat and was in a coma. I started crying and begging her not to leave me and then a tear rolled down her cheek. I realized that my asking her not to leave was wrong and I just said "It's okay Shuggie you can go" and a couple of seconds later she let out a raspy sound and was gone.
I always sense angels near me and during her last days she would look at me and tell me about the spirits around me. She once told me about an American Indian Older Man around me and I have been told by others that one of my spirit guides is an American Indian man. Through the Grace of God, I was able to administer a Reconnective Healing treatment to one of my closest friend's father on his death bed.
It was one of the most beautiful and sacred moments I've ever experienced, and I was so humbled and grateful to be a part of his transition. My friend asked me to come over at p. I am also an intuitive person, so before I began the healing, I checked in on his status. I saw him in my mind's eye in front of "The Light", but the light was a smaller sphere at this time. I could sense very heavily that he was not ready to go, and I saw him reaching back with his hand extended to his family. He was determined not to leave them. His father was also present in spirit, I believe, to help him cross over.
He was in a drug-induced coma, dying from cancer, until I started the healing session. He came directly into consciousness and sat up in bed. After my friend and her mom assured him all was well, he sank back in bed and relaxed. After I was done, I checked in on him again. He was ready to go now. He was gently looking back this time, but I could keenly sense that it was only to say "goodbye". His demeanor had totally changed from before the healing to being totally at peace with the transition process.
His father thanked me intuitively for helping. My friend's Dad passed away ever so peacefully the next morning. My friend's mom also thanked me because her husband had the strength after the healing to hold her hand until he made his transition. He had not had the strength to do this for almost three weeks prior. What a Blessing and gift God was able to give this family through me.
As a result, she was experiencing the pain she went on a hunger strike to avoid. At this point, Davison's mother pleaded with him to help her to die, and he ultimately conceded by giving her a lethal dose of crushed morphine tablets mixed with water. Davison wrote a book describing the three months he spent with his mother, and at the request of the publisher, he removed the specifics of how he assisted his mother to die. Although Davison lived and worked in Cape Town , he was faced with waiting a year for his trial to commence in New Zealand.
Archbishop Desmond Tutu wrote to the New Zealand High Court, vouching for Davison's character and pleading with the court to allow Davison to return to his family in South Africa, until the date of his trial. The court agreed to this request, setting a legal precedent in New Zealand, due to the seriousness of the offence.
In September , the trial took place in Dunedin , New Zealand. She acknowledged that Archbishop Tutu's request impressed her considerably and the judge concluded that Davison's actions were driven by love and compassion. Following his conviction he said he had no regrets in assisting his mother to die,   he also said he hoped his trial would help bring about a law change on euthanasia.
During Davison's time on home detention he received death threats, including a brick thrown through his house of detention. On returning to his home in South Africa, Davison said he believed doctors had been helping patients to die since the beginning of humanity. In June , Davison was sentenced to an effective 3 years of house arrest for murder in South Africa after pleading guilty to assisting 3 people to end their lives.
While Davison was on bail awaiting trial in South Africa, he founded the organisation DignitySA, which seeks a law change to allow for voluntary euthanasia for those suffering near the end of their lives. In an immediate action, Judge Fabricious granted Stransham-Ford an assisted death via lethal injection by a doctor. Although Stransham-Ford died of natural causes on same day of the High Court decision was made and did not receive a physician-assisted death,  the court ruling set a legal precedent in South Africa.
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Sean Davison - Wikipedia
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase. Elaine Feuer has assembled a world wide history of the progress made in permitting assistance in dying for people suffering unbearably with terminal and chronic illness. But it's not just the laws that were passed in which states and countries but a humanizing of this movement by discussing the lives and difficult deaths endured by the people who often caused the laws to change.
The U. From this tragedy came the first Living Will in with its attendant criticisms and predictions of abuse. To now where 4 states have approved physician aid in dying and several countries in Europe either permit voluntary euthanasia or assisted dying for foreigners as well as their own people. Feuer puts these changes in perspective and paves the way for what is bound to come next in extending the right of people to have choice, dignity and control at the end of their lives.
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Choosing to Die After a Struggle With Life
I would not want to recommend the book. If someone who is dying thinks there are answers that you need for a peaceful death keep looking. To Gently Leave this life: The Right to Die caught my attention since it and its reviews promised me it to be an overview of Right to Die in the World.