Month 6, Day 10: Meeting with Dying with Dignity Victoria Board

Funny world. I get the odd mail where people seem upset at my pain and health scores and feel it disqualifies me from comment. Not sure what makes them tic, but they can rest comfortably my time will come shortly.

Tonight I am off to have a chat with the board of Dying With Dignity Victoria, informal pre board meeting.

Responses from parliamentarians are coming in, so far about 10 for ,5 on the fence and 5 no. Some of the notes are very generous and supportive. I am somewhat amazed given the ask for their time as they were clearly written by the member. Lots is happening on this front.

Also had a great chat about possibly getting support from a Melb Uni by a marketing class taking up as part of their course the challenge on how to build awareness and support on petershort.com.au and the petition. Could be fascinating.

Breathing continues to be a bummer, and I think I can start to see how some forms of disability get to people. Early days but one needs to move slow, talk slow and measure movement or it gets hard quick. Will be interesting to adapt to.

Pain 0/10 Mental Health 10/10 Physical Health 7.9/10 Life Enjoyment 10/10

26 thoughts on “Month 6, Day 10: Meeting with Dying with Dignity Victoria Board

  1. Try not to take notice of the bitter ones who might be making unwelcome comments. What do they know of your personal circumstances. We certainly!! don’t want “your time to come shortly”. On the contrary…. here’s hoping you beat the odds and have plenty more comfortable time.
    Uni idea sounds very interesting. Great to hear that some pollies are actually replying, here’s to the sensible, compassionate ones who are on our side of the debate.
    Well done for all your efforts, make sure you devote plenty of time for you. Julie

  2. Hi pete,
    I am a person who had the pleasure of meeting you during your time at Coles and being inspired by your energy and enthusiasm, now I find myself following your new journey and very much supporting your cause. Nothing can qualify you more to push this cause than being human. Death will become all of us and is the one certainty we all have. How we go in many cases is not our choice however when you are terminally ill with the clock running down you have the right to choose how and when that takes place. I watched a loved one pass away from a terminal illness and i know if they had a choice on how it happend and when they would have made the choice not to suffer the way they did.
    Strength to you and your family and may your time on this earth be how you wish it to be and of your choosing…..

  3. Don’t let the bastards get you down Peter. I can’t really see that happening actually…..
    John told me about the uni thing. That’s great. If anyone can get that going it will be him! I suggested TED as well. Just a thought.

  4. Hi Peter
    Good luck with your goal. I admire you bothering with this issue when you are faced with what you are and when it is very unlikely you will live to see the changes made to legislation that might help people in this situation. I watched my dear wife die from Pancreatic cancer 4 years ago and being a GP have seen many people where palliative care was not enough to stop their suffering which can be physical, mental and existential. I have thought a great deal about death since she left me. I don’t think there is anything to fear in death itself, there is either nothing or else there is something, neither is to be feared, only the manner in which we get there. That is why we all deserve the choice. People who don’t want to take that choice don’t need to, but they have no right to impose their moral views on the rest of us who do want the choice. I don’t care about their moral conscience but I do want the choice.
    Go gently, Doug

  5. Am really looking forward to what the Uni students comes up with re: social media campaign Pete. Hope the groundswell grows exponentially – all power and positive energy too you and yours. ( It might help if people don’t have to log in every time to view or comment – most of us are lazy basta##s)
    Annie

  6. Hi Peter,
    All the best on this challenging journey. I commend you for your determination to die with dignity and to make a difference before you do. You have great courage.

    A question: You mention your health scores by category – I wonder about what they indicate, as some seem to be positive and others not so. Your mental health seems to be 10 mostly but one post 0. Does the 10 indicate doing very well and the 0 an all-time low (or a typo)?

    Best regards,
    Kristin

    • Hi Yep must have been a typo. It is interesting however as pain should be easy, but mental health, and life enjoyment are quite subjective. I do think however the challenging of having a number is good for me and the fact that they are 10’s is just the way it seems to be. Hard to believe when you really think about it but thats how I see it. Physical health also is a funny one. To what I see as great my 7.9 is my lens only i.e. I am a bit restricted i.e. puffy can’t run swim etc. For some my 7.9 would be a 10, like anyone who smokes to be controversial.
      Thanks for the ?
      Peter

      • Surely all these things are subjective? An interesting juxtaposition is increasingly the recognition (scientific rather than observational) that our physical pain levels affect our mental health and vice-versa. I think you are doing well with these in part because you have found this important focus. We (as a society) seem to have lost an ability to focus on living well (as opposed to either indulgently or in penury), and are often unable to even contemplate dying – let alone focus on what we need to go on living well whilst dying. Each of these are things I believe take so much courage. Facing hard realities, and finding the hope and strength in them.

        BTW this is not a criticism of individuals who struggle to do this. Generally speaking we are not encouraged to engage with these things, so it is unknown territory – and terrifying.

        Keep up the good journeying, hopefully an inspiration to many others.

  7. Peter,I am really enjoying reading your blog and as each day passes am delighted to see more people come on board to support your petition. I am in awe of your commitment and dedication to this important Legislative change. Thanks for all your hard work under very trying circumstances!

  8. Hey Pete
    As you probably realize I have been reading your blogs with great interest and feeling much love for you Libby and Mitch. I actually saw one of the replies you refer to and I wonder if it is a case of despair on their part. They referred to someone else who was facing the end of their life and I think that maybe they were feeling helpless and unable to do anything. Sometimes life gets too much and people say or do things that they normally wouldn’t as away of surviving and staying sane. Of course I believe that your fight for the right of choice at end of life would help eleviate this writers pain for their loved one as at least they would be able to take comfort in knowing that the loved one had been able to decide what their passing should entail. I know that it will for me when the time comes Pete.
    As always much live to you all xo
    Janine

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