She had been a nurse when young and knew of sickness, of dying and of death. So when informed of her own terminal disease, she knew what lay ahead.
Far from wilting before the inevitable, she spent her four remaining months living as normally as time allowed, and graciously farewelling friends and family. In many ways, as her children gathered, the days were even happy because love permeated every event.
Was their pain? Nausea? Yes, for a while – but only until the appropriate medication was determined. After that, with pain relieved and with dedicated nursing, she was free to accept her gradual decline.
Inevitably, there came a morning when death could no longer be postponed, and she died as naturally as she was born, 70 years before. She was my wife.
I cannot imagine her ever wanting that precious time curtailed. Or her understanding those who do.
Dominion Post Letter to the Editor. Thursday 13 November 2014
J Barry, Christchurch