Thursday, January 7, 2010




I have a dear friend who has secondary progressive MS. I could go into all the detail about how that is an auto-immune disorder, and all the ramifications but that is not really the point here. Over the more than 12 years I have known her she has tried many, many different therapies, many drugs and many alternative ways of easing her journey. Over the holiday she was considering a particularly dangerous form of chemotherapy. She sought my help, my understanding and my support. Now, this drug, which is primarily a chemotherapy for lung cancer, may, indeed be helpful for her particular form of MS, in it's particular stage of progression. Unfortunately, the two side effects of said therapy are 1) heart damage, heart failure and sudden heart attack which may occur any time during the 12 months of injections OR up to YEARS later. and 2) leukemia. badly do you want to walk?

In helping her think about all the considerations, and in watching her carefully make choices about her health care I began to think about how we make our choices in life...and the care with which she was making this life decision was profoundly affecting my own choice-making.

What if? What if we thought about the choices we made for our lives with as much integrity and care as this woman was making about her choice of therapy?

You *could* choose one route, which may have the effect of sudden loss. Or, you could suffer a long, protracted slide into the end.

Or you could stay with what you know already and make the best of things as they are.

How badly do YOU want to walk? What risks are YOU willing to take to make your life the most biggest, bestest life possible?