How do you go to sleep at night after being told you have a year or less to live?
I suppose during the daytime it is possible to come up with random things to occupy your mind in efforts of refusing to acknowledge the news, but when it’s time for going to sleep, and you crawl between the sheets, there’s no ignoring the thoughts that will travel through your head.
What do you ask yourself? What do you tell yourself?
I’m willing to bet MOST of the readers of this blog have not been told personally news such as “you have a year left to live.” But, if you have, my blessings on you as you have chose to live some of your precious moments of life blog surfing.
However, I’m sure some, if not maybe even half of those reading have had a close loved one who has been given the traumatic news before. And while in your cases, processing this news is no walk in the park, it can’t compare with the process the individual receiving the news about them self must endure.
I’d think bedtime would be the worst of times, especially for someone like myself who can lay in bed at night and ponder thoughts for hours without feeling sleepy at all.
While it’s impossible to know exactly how you would behave in any given situation you haven’t experienced before, I would venture to imagine the initial nights following the news would be stricken with many tears.
Yes, there is the response that the news was brought forth by man, and man is never completely sure on one’s time of death, but with the advancements in science today, we can get closer and closer to estimating prolonged deaths.
So as you lay in bed, what could be crossing your mind?
So maybe the news isn’t correct. Is one going to let this thought cross his/her mind and live the next waking hours believing as if he/she had never gotten the news?
So maybe the news is correct. Maybe one’s allotted days has been revealed. Does one let this thought cross his/her mind and live the next waking hours in preparation for the ending ceremonies?
However, there are two other scenarios, and in statistics they are referred to as Type I Error and Type II Error. These would be as follows:
What if the news isn’t correct, but the individual chooses to believe it? What if science fails us in this situation and the body overcomes it’s obstacle allowing the man to live many years into the future. Has this man wasted his days in the initial year preparing for the end?
Or the other scenario…
What if the news is correct, but the individual refuses to believe it? What if our advances in the medical field are right on the money and within the next 365 days the family is saying goodbye to their loved one? Has this man missed out on preparing his farewell address?
I don’t think a right answer exists to most of these questions. I think most of us have our own ways of dealing with life, whether we are under the impression that we will live to the ripe old age of 95 or whether we are under the impression that life is fragile and the end could be tomorrow.
I know I’ve recently considered the idea of wanting to not be told I have a terminal illness, should one be present. I suppose I believe too much in the power of the mind over the body and I wouldn’t want to give my mind any reason to hit the downward spiral. However, if I was given the news, I would hope that I would be able to pull together my motivation and dedication to overcoming science. I would want to milk life for all it’s worth while at the same time looking toward the future!
I say all this just as random thoughts that have crossed my mind over the past 24 hours since I was informed that the paternal grandpa of my aunt’s kids has had his cancerous brain tumors return. He was given the news of a year left the other day and my cousins were just informed of the news today.
While I might be of no blood relation to this individual, he, as his wife, are good people I respect. And while that in itself is worthy, I feel for my cousins, especially the boys, whom I’ve grown very close to over the past year. While news like this is tough for anyone, it is taken differently by a kid.
I wish blessings on “the fam” as they learn to accept the news as it has been given and rise to the level of continuing to live a fruitful life filled with love and happiness.