October 12, 2014
Dearest Brittany Maynard,
I am heart-broken through your situation. I have seen your video on Dying With Dignity’s website and although I am not experiencing your pain or facing the loss of my life, nevertheless, I think I can share a bit in your struggle. I am sorry you are going through this.
I have hyperacusis. This affliction makes normal everyday noises very painful. I have said goodbye to visits with friends and family, weddings and funerals, restaurants, and events. Even my own voice is like stabbing daggers in my ears at times. The accompanying 24/7 tinnitus that comes with this can be maddening. I am isolated from sound, yet I have a cacophony in my head. It’s quite a position to be in.
Like yourself, the affliction occurred just after being married. I became a wife on August 24, 2013 and this happened on January 18, 2014. Like yourself, I love to travel. I have said goodbye to that too. I have said goodbye to everything that exists outside the walls of my home. I too have many losses.
Thankfully I love to write and read (which comes in handy for my now needed closed captioning!), however, unfortunately, for half of my life I’ve had repetitive strain injury which limits the extent of what I can do. Inflammation and pain from my fingertips to my elbows have been my constant companion for 21 years.
So why am I writing to you? Certainly it’s not to complain.
Suicide has been an answer to some in my situation. I want to tell you why it’s not an answer for me.
I know there is a God who loves me. A God who created me in His image and granted me life for purpose. His purpose. Even if pain and suffering is a part of it.
Please know I am not standing in judgement over you, I am in tears beside you.
In your video on Dying with Dignity’s website, you said, “The reason to consider life and what’s of value is to make sure you’re not missing out.” I can assure you, by the world’s standards, I am missing out. I can also assure you that the value of our lives is so much greater than our experiences. The value of our life is not found in this world.
My value is found in what my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ did for me when He died on the cross. You know when your conscience tells you you’re doing something wrong? That’s the moral code put there by God, letting you know you’re breaking His laws. We all have. But even though I have and will continue to say and do things that offend God, Jesus chose to sacrifice His life so I am forgiven and reconciled with God. He did that for you too. God’s love and mercy is what makes us valuable.
When I die it will be on His timetable and by His method despite my weak moments when I am hoping that day will come sooner rather than later. I’m still getting used to this and it’s not easy. Just as I know your situation is not easy. But when I go to Jesus in my suffering He is always faithful to give me comfort and strength for another day. There are some days when I feel there is more purpose and joy in my life than before the hyperacusis.
When the time comes for God to allow me my last breath, I know I will have eternal life. Are you sure of what happens when you die? In this painful circumstance you are given time to think and pray about it. Many die without expecting it. You have the opportunity to come before the Lord Jesus Christ and ask for forgiveness, live in obedience, and enjoy your remaining days reconciled with your Heavenly Father. You will have assurance of eternal life in heaven. God loves you Brittany Maynard. He “desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Timothy 2:4).
Don’t buy into the lie that you are free to murder yourself. Don’t sell yourself short by the world’s standards. You are accountable to God’s standards. You are fearfully and wonderfully made by your Heavenly Father who loves you (Psalm 139:14).
Our wedding August 2013