Brittany Maynard Brought Much-Needed Attention to Brain Cancer and Choosing Dignity

October 27, 2014 3:51 PM

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It's been three years since my diagnosis of brain cancer. I live my life in the shadow of "stages," like a rocket booster: explosive, progressive, lethal. First it was anaplastic ependymoma, then astrocytoma, now a full-blown GBM (glioblastoma multiforme). I'm five craniotomies in, plus weeks and weeks of radiation, multiple chemotherapies and, most recently, "alternative approaches." At least three times since my diagnosis, I've been told that I have six to nine months to live, or three to six, or less. I've also been told that I am strong, healthy, and that there are always "outliers."

The minute I was diagnosed, my entire being went into overdrive. There was no roadmap for getting through the maelstrom that fell upon our family with such a diagnosis. Sure, there are pamphlets on every rack, and plenty of good advice from doctors. But nothing can prepare you for what exactly to do...

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