Tag Archives: Iwo Jima

A Divine Appointment!

So I was getting ready for the Concert; I was blessed to have a mandolin, harmonica and another guitar player join me early to prepare for the sing along portion of the program. Two women walked in with huge flower arrangements for either side of my stool. The lights were set low and slides were up on the huge screen and monitors in place so that I could hear and see what the audience sees. As I sat in the sound booth and made some last-minute changes to the slides, some one came up to me and said, “Can you do two things at once?”. I said, I used to be able to do twelve things at once. I’m down to two! Go ahead.” He said, “Before you go home tomorrow, would you be willing to sing in a Lutheran Church? Just two songs?” I said, “I would love to do that. Let me speak to my driver (Thank You, Lord, that I have one, a driver that is, for this weekend. My friend Bob’s parents live five miles from the church that I sang at this weekend. I stayed at the local hotel, a mile away.)
The concert was about to begin and the connection for the slides was on and off and on and off. So I decided to begin and sing a little and give them a few minutes to get it working. Twenty minutes later, the “MC” made the introduction and added, “And Sally will be singing in the Lutheran Church tomorrow!” I thought, “Ok, I guess that’s that! I’m singing at another church tomorrow. Thank You, Lord!” I felt a bit distressed as I didn’t run it past my friend/ my driver who had said, he wanted to leave at 9, no later than 10 so that we could avoid ‘Mother’s Day’ traffic. Oh well!

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Euthanasia, Brittany Maynard, and Dying with Dignity

Sally Ettari a/k/a Sally Atari, Singer and Song Writer, Twelve Step RecoveryPeople are talking about Brittany Maynard and her decision to end her young life. Like her, my mother died of glioblastoma, a brain cancer.  As a hospice nurse, I have cared for patients with this same disease. It was hard to watch.

I had planned to talk about something light and easy. Then, I got a phone call from my favorite lawyer. “Mom, why don’t you write about Brittany Maynard killing herself?  She was dying of the same cancer your mother had, and decided to take her own life.” My younger daughter also called me, earlier this week, to pick my brain about this same subject saying, ‘Didn’t your mom die of this cancer?’

It’s my understanding that this beautiful, young girl was told the tumor was in-operable.  It also sounds like she wanted to use  her final time wisely and with her closest loved ones. We know that she was taking medication and trying to do what she could do to treat her illness (She gained a lot of weight and has the classic symptom of ‘moon face’, both side effects of  steroids.)  Maynard said she was having painful headaches and apparently suffered seizures, which is often the case with a brain tumor, although my mom never had one seizure. As a hospice nurse, I have seen how effective both seizure and pain medications can be. Yet, they don’t always work and people do suffer horrible deaths if they are not given the appropriate amount of pain medication. Hospice is all about dying with dignity and providing people with proper pain management!

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