Our very good friends Greg and Chelsea Kennedy, of the Perth Kennedy’s said a while back that if they had a boy they would give him Peter after me as a middle name. At the time I thought that was a pretty nice thing to think about but did not dwell. Well Samuel Peter is now part of the future. What a great honour to have friends do that. Elizabeth feels like an Aunty, Mitch like he has a little brother and me well it is just special. People get to live on in memories but there is one person who like it or not will carry a bit of my memory in a unique way. Imagine he will probably live to be 100 and I bet will be fluent in Chinese by the age of 5. I find it also exciting to think about the relationships that may form around the edges of this over time. I will post a photo when I get one.
Spent yesterday driving up to Echuca to farewell Patsy another great person. It was a fantastic drive, beautiful day and a really good funeral. She would have been very happy a long and interesting life well explained with mirth, humour, respect and sadness.
Still have not heard from the PM re a chat but am making some background moves on it. I don’t have much time so will need to push hard whilst not creating angst for him. Tomorrow checking into Crown Towers with Elizabeth for the day/night to relax and maybe polish my blackjack skills. I am feeling lucky!
Pain 0/10 Mental Health 10/10 Physical Health 5/10 Life Enjoyment 10/10
The Victorian Election on Saturday is something I feel compelled to advise my view on even though Dying with Dignity is a cross party issue.
I would ask you to consider the following.
1. If Fiona Patten of the Australian Sex Party is in your electorate vote for her. She has a great chance for the upper house and will introduce a mandate for change to Dying with Dignity laws in Victoria if elected in the first 90 days.I have her promise and she keeps them! Her party is multi platform and progressive and as it is likely that Victoria will have a balance of power problem, Fiona would be a great reconciler and one of common sense at that sort of table.
2. Next Vote GREEN’s. They are committed to change and again Dying with Dignity. It is very likely they will win balance of power so lets make it clear to all it was not an accident. Their progressive voice will ensure Labor and Liberal end up doing something rather than bicker.
3. If you really have to go major party, go Labor. They support conscience voting on Euthanasia and they have stated existing laws need review. You don’t get much from them as a terminally ill person but it is a crack in the fabric and just maybe Gavin Jennings (Health) will surprise us all with action beyond that promised. He wants to I think.
4. Don’t Vote Liberal, on this topic they condescend, won’t meet and will not even contemplate change. No point going on their flaws are manifest and clear to the terminally ill and incurably suffering.
These are views I offer if you see the myriad of policies confusing and really see change to the medical treatment act to enable Dying with Dignity in Victoria enacted as important to you and your family. It presupposes you are fed up with the last few state governments unable to do anything of significance due to no real power. It works on the logic that the Greens should and we need them to, win the balance of power in the upper house.
I cross my fingers for Fiona Patten as I can’t vote for her and will cast my green vote in Hawthorn, passionately and proudly believing very strongly in what they may be capable of doing if you let them in. Feel free to go viral with this idea if you like it.
Pain 0/10 Medical Health 10/10 Physical Health 5/10 Life Enjoyment 10/10
What a great day. I spent a lot of it today with my family, film crew and Jane from Good Weekend magazine who is preparing an interesting piece on our story. It was all happening. My film crew filming Jane’s photographer filming her interviewing us. She was great to talk with and the photographer took some hopefully great stills for later memories. Jane is approaching the interview as a double header meeting, today with a follow up tomorrow to mop up the pieces. Bodes well for an interesting story and some new angles. Jane also has a connection to a special friend we have met along the way, Marilyn and her father is Bill so there is a bit of him in this one as well. Meant to make sense to a few.
Elizabeth and I also went to dinner with 3 of our crowd funding people who were able to meet the date and had signed up for a dinner. Dinner buzzed with film crew and a great atmosphere and table at http://www.elyros.com.au in Camberwell. New, written up in paper and if you like Greek food a must go. It is recently opened great wine list & food (some nice and slippery so easy on the swallow) staff/team and prices/value. Also a great farewell liquer with the good greek coffee. Our guests were Tim an ex Coles Executive and long time friend, Chris a teacher, ethics expert, writer and member of the rationalists society and Michael a 24 year old soft ware and apps designer who has managed a difficult end of life process last October with his mother. We had a fantastic conversation around Dying with Dignity, politics, choice, freedoms of the individual and ideas on next steps to raise awareness.
Two ideas were maybe a Dying with Dignity app/game related to our Australian Federal quest for legislative change, but so good it goes viral and Mavens. How do we find one or 2 Oz celebrities who in the next 12 months will join me to not just be ambassadors, but to positively convey the message of a bill in federal parliament to enact Dying with Dignity laws and recognise the rights of the Terminally ill and incurably suffering so shoddily treated today.They can help highlight the need for all Australians to take a stand with politicians as these people are so good at social influence. Think, music, sport, racing of all sorts, actors and TV celebrities even gutsy big end of town CEO’s. Who knows these people, feel free to put me in touch. Elizabeth did mention she saw Geoffrey Rush at the post office but did not think to say hi!
One really interesting discussion was how politicians colour the topic of Dying with Dignity with their own personal religious view yet who has heard politicians tell us their religious view as part of an election campaign and the impact their views will have on us. They just tell us what they will start, stop and spend. Maybe we should ask more?
Pain 0/10 Mental Health 10/10 Physical Health 5.5/10 Life Enjoyment 11.5/10
Today is interesting. I have done lots of loose ends. I have made a few catch up dates, booked into a hotel Sunday night for a relax with Elizabeth, locked in a drive up to Echuca for a funeral of a best friends mother on Friday, and am about to do an interview with an very senior Melbourne Palliative Care professional for my documentary. We are also waiting on a lady who is dropping round to pick up our lIzard cage which she bought on EBAY. The poor old lizard, Balboa died a few weeks ago, as did our cat. We are having a run of it.
Tonight as a family we are going round to Uncle Jim’s for drinks and nibbles, not too late as I usually tap out round 9pm. It is a bit more of making use of every minute. All the Shorts will be there so around a dirty dozen or so. Documentary people coming so will be interesting to see who spills what.
I just finished my Palliative Care interview, quite wide ranging and the lady involved is an exceptionally talented person. She said she just wishes I had become an advocate for palliative care vs DWD but as we agreed in reality I am. There is no guessing where this will finish and I see palliative care as fundamental in my current process. The debate is my last week or so, the power of Choice is in the 8 or so months since I have had it. We also had an interesting discussion around drugs, vs dripping out on morphine. She made me aware Australia has a very good drug options regime and there are 6 or 7 very powerful specialised drugs outside of just morphine. They are targeted at different receptors and are chosen for use by the doctors depending on symptoms etc, a cocktail may even be used. I am thinking Long Island Ice Tea. The point I think is yes you still drip out to use my emotive words but it may well not be morphine. Her points were well made and interesting. It is just another of those upsides of my circumstance to be able to have such interesting and thought provoking chats.
Pain 0/10 Mental Health 10/10 Physical Health 5/10 Life Enjoyment 10.5/10
Well last week was very busy. I had a lot of activity around an old commercial law case and it finalised for me in the Federal court on Friday with a 7 hour cross examination. All a bit of fun and quite tiring, though the attorney for the enemy was a bit embarrassed when he said to the judge , he would not continue a line of cross examination with me because he was flogging a dead horse. Very funny at the time given the circumstances, embarrassing for him I am sure. Anyway that is over so this week I go into the world with really no commitments left to anyone other than family, common sense stuff and the Doco which will stop when I do. Lots of interviews etc coming up. It is a very relaxing feeling in a strange way. Having come off Chemo I am also getting a bit more energy so all up looking forward to the coming weeks.Spent today with Mitch doing boy stuff.
I am madder than hell about the PM continuing to stonewall conscience voting. To me it is pretty basic. I have a letter from his Parliamentary Secretary Josh Frydenberg stating, “we need an honest, open, and high level public debate on this issue”. I gather he speaks on behalf of the Govt. We have public opinion polls around the country together with media articles and commentators literally screaming for action, we have a unanimous Senate Committee recommendation into a draft Dying with Dignity Exposure bill recommending the PM support a conscience vote when this private members bill comes to the parliament. YET the PM says nothing effectively blocking open ,honest and high level debate. It is just untenable to believe he can demonstrate such a double standard.
Today I got a letter from Anthony Coles, Assistant Secretary to the Federal Attorney General, apologising for the delay in responding to my enquiry to them some 3 MONTHS ago! It is just unbelievable and unacceptable. Key message is “The Australian Government does not support legalising voluntary euthanasia at a federal level” How do I reconcile such conflicting messages, across such spans of time, by what is supposed to be one team Team Australia. If they were rowers everyones teeth would get knocked out.
I again rang the PM office last Thursday, was told to put it in writing and could expect a response to a request for a meeting in 2 to 3 months. Clearly I will be dead! Not dramatic just fact they may win over my dead body so to speak. I retraced my steps to Josh Frydenberg’s office to plead access and his office has helpfully approached the PM’s office on my behalf.
I really do have to solve this. I will let the week work through then if no response post the noise of this weeks Vic election I will have to launch a new, different and unique approach. I ask all media, contacts and friends to be ready to help as of Monday morning if I am left in this sickening void. Please contact me with thoughts this week in anticipation of help will be needed.
Pain 0/10 Mental Health 10/10 Physical Health 5/10 Life Enjoyment 10.5/10
A video tells all the story: please watch listen and stay engaged with me as i move forward. There is much still for us all to do and comprehend.
This is the scan, you need to be a doctor to get much out of it, but all the white bits in the lungs are cancer, yuck!
This is the great thing about my blog, you all can bet up-to-date and I feel this is important for my friends to all know.
Pain 0/10 Mental Health 10/10 Physical Health 5.0/10 Life Enjoyment 10/10
Fantastic news. Met Derryn Hinch today and after a great conversation he said Peter with regards to the Doco how can I help?, what a question from such a person! We have agreed to meet again asap and there are a lot of thoughts around how best to use this opportunity. Imagine Hinch interviewing some people, even me on our documentary just for a start.
Re the scan, get the results tomorrow now so will update then.
A short blog but boy Hinch is enough don’t you think!
Pain 0/10 Mental Health,10/10 Physical Health 5.9 /10 Life Enjoyment 10/10