This beautiful, courageous lady has passed away. In her final message, she said,

“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…the world is a beautiful place, travel has been my greatest teacher, my close friends and folks are the greatest givers…goodbye world. Spread good energy. Pay it forward”.

Brittany represents millions of terminally sick people, people with such spirit, people with such a zest for life:

…when these courageous people feel their lives ebbing away, they so desperately want to hold onto life, they so desperately want to carry on living life to the absolute max. Brittany wanted so much to live, she knew the value of life and living…people like Brittany are our best teachers, no one else can impart to us that value, only people who are loved and who love but who see the end of their lives approaching, who know that they’ll soon be leaving the party, only these people can truly express to us how important it is that we grab on, that we really connect with life and that we don’t waste it. We should all draft our bucket lists NOW and do our very best to connect with life in a way that Brittany would want us all to do…if only one person takes on board the lessons Brittany wanted to impart, then some good has come from this darling girl’s passing (if it’s possible for any good to come from it).

I know it’s morbid and morose but I am very conscious that it could all be over at any minute, I have a sense of foreboding – I say it’s morbid and morose but, actually, it’s not because I don’t dwell on it, I don’t get depressed about the fragility of life…I get my vitality and appetite for life from the appreciation of the fact that it could end today…I look at my loved ones, my children, Yaf, my mum and dad, my sister, my nephews and niece, friends and it might sound cheesy but I feel the love. In 2001, I was very ill, Yaf was told by the doctors that they didn’t know if I’d make it and, if I did, if I’d be mentally ok (no jokes, please!!)…of course, I can, and do, get hacked off like everyone else, I do have ‘down’ days but I also have a hold on life which is guided by that experience, I do get a real kick out of the things which others, who have not had a close call, might not appreciate…a song I haven’t heard before, a classic movie I haven’t seen before, I walk in a wood I haven’t been to before, I so often say to myself, “wow, it’s good to be alive…I so nearly didn’t hear that, see that, go there”. The biggest kick I get is from my children – I almost shuffled off this mortal coil when Ziv was 2 and Romi and Raphael weren’t born…give or take a day, Romi was born exactly a year after I came out of Intensive Care!!

As a lot of ‘my readers’ know, I’m in the process of re evaluating my understanding of, and relationship with, G-d. I am very spiritual and have a strong sense of divinity but I don’t understand it. I do believe that, behind the scenes, there is a huge power/force and I guess that is, for me, G-d. I don’t understand how He works and maybe it was arrogance and naivety on my part to ‘humanise’ Him and to have expectations of Him akin to those I’d have of a person. In the scheme of things, I’m a fraction of a fraction of a fraction of an atom but, when I think of what could have been, or rather what might never have been, I feel that, maybe just at that moment of survival, I was more than an atom to G-d, that He wanted me to live, that I was meant to have a life and that there is a purpose, that I am here for a reason. I don’t for one second think that G-d is going to hand it to me on a plate or that it’ll come to me regardless of what I do or don’t do…I guess that G-d has given me my life and it’s up to me what I do or don’t do with it.

I feel the spirit of Brittany Maynard today and I hope I always do. Sometimes, there seem to be so many hurdles stopping us from living life to the max, so many excuses, so we should think of Brittany and remember that, for her, the only thing getting in the way was her terminal illness, that if she could have kicked that into touch, she’d have lived life as it was meant to be lived. Whilst we don’t have that one huge hurdle and as long as we have the physical and mental capabilities, we must really live life, not just tread water.

Brittany Maynard RIP – may G-d grant your family the strength to get through their nightmare and may they all have a future full of good times.