Death With Dignity: Compassion and Choices – Brittany Maynard

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Compassion | Death With Dignity | No Judgment. Just  Love.On November 1, 2014, Brittany Maynard made a personal choice to end her physical pain brought on by the cancer she was suffering from and chose to compassionately end her life. As I write this blog, I am keenly aware that my views may not be shared by some, and for that I have No Judgment. Just Love.™ for them and for me. I am moved by her decision to face death with dignity, and the conversation it opened up about the personal choice to compassionately end her own life.


When I was a little girl, my dog Skippy became ill with some kind of skin condition. Every time he scratched, he broke the skin so badly, that his whole body was covered in sores. We could see how much pain he was in. After school one day, my parents told me Skippy died. Later I found out they couldn’t bear watching him live with so much pain, they took him to the veterinarian, made the decision and put him down.

Then in my 30’s, home alone one night in a raging storm, my cat of 17 years had a stroke. I didn’t even know cats could have a stroke! But she did and her hind legs stopped working. She moaned as she tried to stand and when she tried to walk she screamed that blood curdling cry cats can make. So I placed her in a blanket and weathered the storm, driving the dark back roads of New Jersey’s town of West Milford and making it safely to the animal hospital. This gentle, kind doctor placed my kitty on a cold metal table and after he examined my sweet pet that was in my life since she was born, he told me I needed to make the compassionate decision to euthanize her. [Definition – to put (a living being, especially a dog or cat) to death humanely.]

So twice in my life, I’ve experienced the compassionate ending of a pet’s life. And because of that I cannot understand why it is even a question that an adult can choose death with dignity. It is very personal and private between that adult and what their beliefs are. And once again, I extend No Judgment. Just Love.™

I believe that we live here on earth in our bodies and we live on in spirit infinitely beyond the death of our physical selves. My analogy is that we are all in a grand and glorious home filled with many, many rooms. And collectively we are all together in this grand mansion of humanity. When I am alive in my physical form, I imagine myself in the family room together with everyone who is alive and living on the earth. Then when it is my time to die, or I compassionately choose death with dignity, I’ll just slip out of this body and walk (or maybe glide) into another room.

Death With Dignity

Brittany made a personal decision. She was surrounded by her loved ones when she died and left us this heartfelt message: “Goodbye to all my dear friends and family that I love. Today is the day I have chosen to pass away with dignity in the face of my terminal illness, this terrible brain cancer that has taken so much from me … but would have taken so much more,” Brittany wrote on Facebook. “The world is a beautiful place, travel has been my greatest teacher, my close friends and folks are the greatest givers. I even have a ring of support around my bed as I type …. Goodbye world. Spread good energy. Pay it forward!”

And from me to Brittany, come on back to the family room in your spirit form when you feel better. I’ll close my eyes, feel your presence and greet you with a warm smile from the place of No Judgment. Just Love.™

#NJJL #CherishtheCharm

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