Medical Aid in Dying is Not Suicide – Yes on Prop 106

By Julia Garland

I am 45 years old and have been battling ovarian cancer for almost 3 years. My family has a gene mutation, and I lost my aunt and grandmother to ovarian cancer. I also lost my father to cancer from this same mutation just two years ago. My chances of survival are slim.

Julia Garland and her Bulldog named Louie.
Julia Garland and her beloved Bulldog, Louie.

I don’t want to die. I want to live to be an old lady. I want to go back to work and be a productive member of society again. I know my chances are slim but I’m willing to try anything and everything the doctors think might work. I’ve already tried all kinds of alternative treatments, including spending a few weeks in a clinic in Mexico receiving treatments that aren’t offered in the United States. I’m hoping to get into a clinical trial at the University of Pennsylvania, and I’m open to literally any ideas people have brought to me for healing. The only way I’ll stop fighting my cancer is when I know for sure there are literally zero options out there left to try.

I was raised a Christian and to believe that only God can decide when it is time to die. But I believe that when there is no doubt that day is coming, choosing to die before things get extremely messy, difficult, costly, ugly and painful, is NOT suicide. In the same fashion, it is NOT suicide if a person chooses to jump out of the window on the 100th floor of a burning building because they’d rather not die from smoke inhalation or burning to death. When God makes it apparent that our day has come, we should be able to choose our method of dying without judgment by anyone, because it is still God’s will. Please vote yes on Prop 106.

 

Julia Garland lives in Denver.