Dying Man’s Daily Journal – To Know You are Dying

Yesterday, was not a good day felt sick most of the day and today is starting off the same. I keep thinking maybe, instead of fighting the nausea, I should just throw up when the feeling comes. May be it is nature or something, I don’t know, but I fight the urge until the end. When, I am feeling that way, controlling the nausea is the only thought in my head. Maybe, it is just I hate throwing up even more than I do the sick feeling. Ah,well when a day starts off like this you know all it can do is get better, always have that to look forward to.

My administrators site, here on the blog, allows me to see the wording people put into their search engines to find my journal. Most often are inquiries into how to talk to the dying or on what it feels like to know you are dying.

How does it feel to know you are dying? That is a difficult question, because the answer can be different from day to day or even from hour to hour. The feeling, range from denial, to fear, to guilt, to anger, to sadness and to acceptance. It is the same, I suppose, as any greiving process. You can’t work your way through one set of feelings and neatly move on to the next.

It is almost like being at the beach, standing in the water on a windy day. A wave comes at you and almost knocks you off your feet. You struggle and regain your balance, just in time for the next wave to hit. Over time, the strength of the waves subside and you think your footing is a little more secure. Suddenly, out of seemingly no where another large wave hits and you almost loose your balance again.

I suppose that pretty much describes the grieving process for anything. You can be hit by wave after wave of denial or anger, what ever, each wave trying to knock you down. The emotional waves don’t hit in any particular order or strength. Gradually, these waves do lessen in strength or intensity and you come to the peacefulness of acceptance. You are still not out of the water, and at anytime a wave can suddenly come back and hit.

Over time these emotional waves become less frequent and less severe. For me acceptance came almost as a relief. Knowing, I would not have to deal with the roller coaster ride of emotions, the ups and downs. Am I totally free of these feelings, no. I don’t really know, if I ever will be totally free. As long as you are alive, how can you be totally free of your feelings? Accepting them is one, thing being free of them is another. The waves have just been downsized and more easily manageable.

Maybe, I am still in an element of denial. I know what the doctors have said and I accept that. I just don’t think it is going to happen any time soon. Is that denial or just the human spirit pushing us on? I don’t know. With acceptance does that mean I have given up? No. Does that mean I have lost the will to live? NO. All it means is I am ready to go when God calls me, but not one minute before that. I do not fear death, I just want to delay it as long as possible.


37 Responses to Dying Man’s Daily Journal – To Know You are Dying

  1. lisa says:

    I wish you weren’t dying. I wish I weren’t dying. We are all dying though. I have not much time left. I am 36 years old. I have cancer. I prefer not to say what type as it is irrelevant in the end and I don’t want medical advice, I have loads of that.

    Thank you for your writings. I think it helps. I think dying is a profoundly personal, and lonely thing. We all go through it, just as you and I do. It is frightening… it is the most extreme thing imaginable… even if you are religious, it is huge to die. I cannot understand it. I never will… none of us really ever will…. religions are formed ove this. It is horrible. But also, it is inevitable. No one escapes it. You feel al alone. You are not alone. SO MANY have done this. That is my comfort, in some bizarre way…. I don’t know if I cease to exist or something else goes on, and I don’t care to fight with people over it. I am well informed on religion and remain in a state of not knowing but really hoping about a lot of things… in any case, the beauty of life is we are all connected in this way. You and I will experience the same thing… as the last breath escapes us…. I love you. I love you. Thank you for documenting your experience for me. I love you and and all my fellow living/dying creatures as we will all know this together, and we all take it seriously, and while i cannot help you and you cannot help me, I feel less alone in a lonely,and scared in a lonely, scary thing…

    I hope you last a long time. I am so sorry you are going through this. YOu should have had forever. You should have had a healthy body and lots of time and had a chnace, a real chance with a real amount of time. We all should. I am so sad that you don’t and I don’t and so many don’t… I am 36. ANd I know that historically, I have had a longer life span than most. There are kids that die every day… but life, life is everything… I wouls finish my trhoughts but need to sleep and am sorry if I have offended

    • Caitlin says:

      Beautiful words Lisa. Thank you for sharing your experience. It is lonely, but you are never alone. A piece of you will be in my thoughts forever.

      • Patti says:

        Caitlin – I don’t blame you a bit on not wanting to discuss what type of disease you have, etc….I understand what you are saying…it seems that everyone and their dog has an opinion of what drugs to take, what drugs not to take, surgeries, and all the other opinions that people are so wiling to dispense. I dislike it all. Caring for another person doesn’t equate dispensing un-desired recommendations.

  2. hudds53 says:

    Dear Lisa
    I thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings. My heart goes out to you. I wish you had a healthy body and could live of long happy life. I wish I had some magic words that could help and comfort you. But we both know there really aren’t any.
    You are right when you say dying is a very lonely thing. It is really the only thing in this world that we have to do completely alone. It is an end shared by us all but each,alone, when our time comes. It is huge, very personal and at times scary.
    If my writings has helped you in any small way I am very glad. You and I share a special bond. We are at a point where we know what it feels like to be dying. No matter how hard we could try, there really is no way to describe that feeling. No one else can truly understand unless they are going through it also. Our situations are different, but the result is the same.
    Reading you story I can relate, when you say somehow it is a little less lonely, knowing there is someone else there with you, facing what you are facing. Feeling the same sorrows, worries, fears, etc. that come with our situation. I thank you for sharing and ask that you please do again as often as you can.
    Possibly in a remote email sort of way we can provide each other with a shoulder to lean on or to cry on.
    I love you and you are in my heart, thoughts and prayers.

  3. Bridget says:

    Dear Lisa:

    I cannot say that I know what you are going through because I have not been informed that I am dying anytime soon. However, none of us knows that day or the hour (for the most part) that our life will end.
    Last week I needed to drive my daughter to school. I go a back way as to avoid traffic on the main roads. I live in NY so traffic is a constant problem. When I arrived back home, I noticed that all of the traffic seemed to be coming off the main road and down my street. It went back up the other end that goes out to the main road as well…but further down. I came to find out from my sons bus driver that a lady had been killed that morning. A young lady. I didn’t know her but I felt so horrible inside that it was overwhelming. I started to think about her family (if she had one) and how they must be suffering being that this atrocity happened during the holidays. She didn’t get a chance to say good-bye. She didn’t see it coming.
    I know that you are probably angry and depressed right now. You have every reason to be. I think that all of us at some time or another get that way, even when death is not looming in the near future for us specifically. Not to the extent that you are because we can put it to the backs of our minds and let it go for the time. However, you cannot. You are able to see it coming unlike the lady who died in the street last week.I don’t know if that’s a good thing or a bad thing. Sometimes I think it’s good because we get to prepare and say goodbye. Then again, it causes much stress and fear and depression for some. But I also think that it will drive you to search for your own faith during this time. Please try to do that. I think you are. I know that it will calm you some if you can find your faith.I think that it is harder when we don’t know what to believe in concerning God and an afterlife. Sometimes it just doesn’t make sense. And when things don’t make sense to us we tend to become anxious and even fearful. I pray that you find your strength and your faith.
    Also, you are not alone, Lisa. We are all here for you. I know that you cannot physically see us or physically hear us but we are still here. Have faith in that.
    You too, Bill. All of us together can give comfort and strength. We are all going to be in this boat one day. I hold you and Lisa close to my heart today. I pray that you both will find peace and clarity.
    Your friend,

  4. hudds53 says:

    Dear Bridget
    Thank you for the wonderful comment. You have such a way with words.
    Reading anything you have to say is always a blessing.

  5. Jo Hart says:

    Dear Bill,

    I have just found your webpage and found it very inspiring to read. What a marvellous and brave man you are. I have a cousin who is dying of cancer and he has not been given much time left. He is 41 and has 4 children under the age of 7. Having children myself, this just breaks my heart. I have been trying to find a webpage on trying to help someone accept they are dying, and then after reading your page, I now feel so selfish. My cousin does not want to accept he is dying and you are not allowed to talk about it with him. We know he knows but he is a closed book, even now right up until the end. I was trying to find something that would help, something to say, but in the end, what can you say, what can you do. It has to be up to the individual and this is how he deals with it. I am a very spiritual person and I believe so greatly of our loved ones who have passed are there with us at all times and i want to say this to him, but I just feel that I can’t. Do you have any advise on this. Am I being selfish in wanting to help him accept that he is dying? I hope this email finds you in good spirits.

    Jo Hart
    Brisbane Australia

  6. Satine says:

    Dear Bill,

    I am new to this blog but would like to offer my help to anyone out. I have been through the death of my beloved and it was hard, every day for years his suffering went on. But through all the pain of death coming, we stayed in the present moment, it always helped that we had each other. Every moment we made sure that we were mindful of the gift of life, even in the face of it been taken away. I would have taken his place in a moment, and I felt death and wished it would come and take me too.
    When he died, hours before the moment of his final breath, he was seeing a beautiful place and kept telling me, “you should see it” over and over he said this whilst pointing to the roof of the hospital room. I knwe him better than anyone and he was always so happy, kind and genlte but I never swa him happier than the day that he passed from the body to the spirit form. He was seeing into his future I believe. This gave me peace and was one of the more positive things that happened in the last few days of his life.
    I sat for months after his death, just looking out into the stars or on the horizon wishing he would come and take me, I was sure he wouldn’t leave me behind, how could he? We were one.
    We are all blessed to be here, I hope that peace and love and light find you all.
    I am still here and now I know why.
    I am here to help others, in anyway I can.

    I would just like to say Thank you to you Bill for sharing yourself with all of your visitors. I will come back to see how you are going and please, to all of you out there who might need a little help, please ask me.


  7. SJ says:

    Hello, I’ve just come across your webpage. I’m at a state in my life where I am scared because I know that I’m going to die. I don’t know when (I don’t have advanced knowledge that I will) but that uneasiness, that fear I have is there. Reading what your words have given me a sense of comfort for the most part, and I want to thank you for that even if that feeling is temporary.

  8. Alejandro Valdes says:

    I am 38 years old, single, no kids and dying of male breast cancer that has spread to my organs. I don’t know if I’ll make it through the year. I’m so sad that I will not be able to realize many of my dreams. I haven’t told anybody in my family of my illness because my mother was sick for over 2 years before she passed and many people in my family were put through a lot, including myself. I don’t want anybody to feel sorry for me, and I don’t want anybody to go through any pain because of my situation. I’ve accepted the fact that I will not be around for long, but I’m terrified of suffering. Although I am surrounded by people, I always feel alone. I often find confort in the hopes that god does really exist, and that there is something in store after I leave this world. I know everyone is dying, but I would have preffered not to know it was coming. I thank god for everything in my life and appreciate every breath. Many people dont have the privelege to live the life i’ve lived. Like somebody said in a previous comment, children die everyday. But after all of this , I battle fear and lonliness on a consistent basis.

  9. Chloe says:

    I’ve decided to do a cause-effect essay on how the effects of knowing that your dying.. if you all could just express what the effects of knowing such a devistating thing of knowing you cannot live longer that would be very helpful..

  10. anik says:

    Everyone will die…Allah is there…he is true..Only one god..please try to find the truth before dying.Make sure your family remains in good situation after u pass away.Pray to god..Allah give peace to your soul.Dont worry..yr just ahead of us on our way to death.

    Just think of the real life waiting for you after death..which has no end.

    Dear Anik, I thank you so much for your reply. I have long hoped to hear from others with different faiths and beliefs than my own. We can all learn from each other.
    I appreciate your words of assurance.

  11. April says:

    Bill, Lisa and Alejandro,
    I really feel for you, I myself am not planning on dying anytime soon, but my dad was told they’d be suprised if he made it to this christmas. He has four different types of cancer.I’ve always asked my dad about death but the other day I was speechless and teared up when my dad asked me, “April, do you think it will hurt?” Time is going by so fast and its so hard watching someone try to do everything they have always wanted before they passed. My grandparents both had cancer. My grandfather had colon cancer and was given 6 months when I was four. He lived til one week after my 16 birthday. I was thinking my dad was a fibber and that there is no way a 49 year old who seems perfectly normal on the outside could really be that sick on the inside. I told my self the doctors would be wrong with him just like they were with my granfather. But, my dad decided against treatment. He felt if he is dying, why spend the last days, weeks, months or years sick? Its true knowing you are dying is a rollercoaster one day your ready the next your crying and angry. I actually envy my dad. I get angry at him like its his fault he is leaving and that at least he doesn’t have to live knowing Im he’s gone. I find him lucky in away. Once your gone there is no more pain and suffering. While the restof us live the rest of our days with our loved ones in our thoughts still never knowing our time. I really feel for all of you who are passing. All I can say is live the rest of your life to the fullest and who cares if doctors say dont do this dont do that really if your dying what can it hurt. My grandfather wanted one beer the day before he slipped into a coma. The doctor said no. What would it have hurt? Do what you want as long as it doesn’t envolve hurting others and live while you can. Make your last moments count cause who knows where we go from here. Do spendd your last days sad that your going to die. If there is no other way but to die why dwell. Make it count 🙂 Your in my prayers

    Hi April. I am honored that you would stop by to share your feelings. Reading your words it is almost like I can feel your pain and my heart goes to you. I am so very sorry to hear of your fathers cancer. My prayers are for you both.
    I have always said that I do believe it is much harder on the families that are left behind. It takes time to work through the grieving process.
    For the families of those with a terminal illness, it is like there are 2 separate grieving periods. First, you grieve the fact your loved one is going to be leaving. Then ultimately comes the time when you grieve the actual passing. It is hard, very hard and takes time.
    Your situation is, your father is fighting his battle and you are fighting yours. These battles are very similar but are not the same. I hope and pray you are able to spend as much time together as possible providing mutual support back and forth. I pray you have other loved ones at your side to support you through this time. At a time like this loving support is so important, such a comfort.
    Please know, you, your father and entire family is always welcome to come here for support. You will find the blog has evolved into a loving supportive community of wonderful people all here willing to support you in any way we can. I hope you are at least some what comforted knowing that you are now in the prayers of many from all around the world.
    In answer to your father’s question. Do you think it will hurt? My thought, my belief is no it will not hurt. Physical pain will come from the cancer, but that will all be gone in a moment.
    The advice you have given us all on living live is a message we can all learn from. I thank you for sharing you thoughts with us all.
    I am going to send you a short email. Just so you have my email address. I ask you to please return here to the blog to share your feelings. But if either you OR you father should wish to chat in a more private setting, I am here for you.

  12. Cathy says:

    My sis-in-law, Sandy is 48 & Hospice was called in this week. She has been fighting lung cancer stage 4 for since Dec.08. She has been ill this past yr. but she is very ill now as I speak. She opted against the final radiation & she told Hospice that when she got better, she would not need them anymore. Death is not in her vocab,for she continues to say that God will heal her and she believes it. Her hope is in Christ the Living Savior. She has had many treatments this past yr., to no avail. The cancer has spread to her brain, esphogus & probably other major organs.I came on this web site as I have search for encouragement and what to say to someone who is terminally ill. What I have read has humbled my heart. I can honestly say that my heart hurts for each of you. To know that death is inevitable and you life is so beautiful, precious, and every moment counts. I hear it in every word that you write and I see it in my precious, sisters face. Yes, she is very scared and is afraid to sleep for fear of the unknown. I think pills are being given to calm her, but I cannot fathom how the body can just shut down and the mind is so determined to continue on with life? I can promise all of you this, you will be in my prayers and I pray that God our Father will carry you in His loving, gentle arms and give you love & peace in your latter days.We will be gone from this earth one day and yes, it frightens me. I do not dwell on it for as of now, I am so thankful for every breath I take, for tommorrow it could all be gone in a blink of eye. May God, creator of this universe, give you all comfort for your beautiful souls.

    Hi Cathy, I thank you so very much for your kind loving words of support. I am so very sorry to hear of all Sandy is going through and for all you and your entire family is going through. It is such a very difficult time for all. Please know you are in my heart and prayers. I wish I had some magic words i could write that would ease your burden. But there really just are none that I know of that can help you in the way I wish.
    It is obvious both Sandy and yourself have a strong belief in God. I hope and pray that believe can give you comfort at this difficult time. Personally, I am comforted by knowing, God will never put anything before me, that he will not be there to help me through.
    I pray daily asking for God’s will to be done in my life and placing myself in his hands. What better place could I be than in God’s hands? I pray asking that God’s will be done in my life daily. I suppose that should mean i accept all that comes my way but no matter how hard I try that remains often so difficult to do. I keep fighting and insisting the “MY” will be done, after all, I know what is best for me.
    Far be it from me to explain God’s Will. Sometimes bad things happen to good people. Possibly we will understand when we leave this physical world, I don’t know.
    What I do know is that I do consider every moment on this earth to be a blessing from God. While there are in deed times when it is a struggle, I still have some life left in me. I want my stay on this earth to last as long as possible. While I am fighting to stay here, why not fight to really live and enjoy what ever time I do have. I speak fo myself when I say this. I am not going to give up on living, enjoying life before my physical body does. Much easier to say than to do, I know.
    I pray Sandy is able to find peace withing herself and release the fear which is denying her the ability to really live. I hope and pray she has many many more years of living ahead of her.
    I like to think of things in physical human terms gives this mind of mine a better grasp on things it seems. For me to understand, I see the Good Lord as having the equivalent of some sort of calendar. My name is on that calendar. There is a certain time and date at which time I will be called home. I can’t change that. All I can change is myself. My thinking and how I live between this moment and that time and date.
    I do thank you so much for sharing your thoughts with us. I do hope you will visit again and share more as you see fit.
    You are all in my thoughts, heart and prayers.
    Hope you don’t mind, I am sending you an email

  13. Chris says:

    Dying is intensely personal. Each of us finds a way through it, and the stories here are touching to the core. I knew I was dying way before starting the investigativ process that confirmed what I already knew. I don’t have any pain at the moment, and I am told that it is unlikely that I will have. I look at my wife and my two children, and know that they will be ok. Sure, they will grieve, but they are loving and wonderful people and will move on which is what I want for them. The thing is, you see, they don’t know yet. If I tell them, they will worry, and my time with them will be full of that anxiety. There may come a time when I need to tell them, but right now, I know beyond any doubt that they do not need to know what is happening to me. WHat they do know is that I have not been well for a while now. My two girls who are 7 and 10 are warm, happy well adjusted, kind and considerate children. They know I sleep a lot these days, and to them, that is “normal”. I am told it is likely I will go to sleep one day and not wake up. There are worse ways to leave the world. Some of you may feel they have a right to know; to prepare, but I am not at all sure how a 7 year old “prepares” to lose her daddy. So, rightly or wrongly, I have taken a decision to make my last journey alone. My family could not be more loving to me if they knew, and, as I say, it would cloud each of their days from here on in.
    I pray that all on this thread will find peace and comfort in the love of God. In my faith, after all, I am not dying, I am merely going home.

    Chris, I welcome you to the blog and thank you for sharing your touching sotory with us. You are right in how we deal with dying is a very personal, individual thing. I am not sure if there is a right or wrong way to approach it, other than to be comforted as you are with the knowledge that what we are really doing is going home. That thought has carried me through a lot.
    What you are facing is a very difficult journey a very lonely journey is done alone. You have chosen not to share this information with your family and I respect that decision as being the right one for you at this time. I started my own journey with a similar mindset and found it all just too difficult to deal with, but that is me.
    Chris this is a tremendous burden to carry alone. I urge you to talk to someone, share your feelings, let it all hang out so to speak. Being able to talk has been such a relief to me, really beyond anything I can describe. Talk to a clergy man, a relative, a friend a therapyst, anyone that will allow you to unburden your feelings to. Know also you are always welcome here on this blog. You would find here a loving community of friends that would give you much needed support as well as listening ears if you feel a need to just vent.
    May I ask what is your medical condition? What have the doctors told you?
    I wanted to post a response to your comment as soon as I saw it. I have so much more I could say but at this very moment am just lacking the time. I hpe you don’t mind but today or tomorrow I will be emailing you directly.

  14. Mikey says:

    For the past month I have had a lump in the upper portion – the hard palate – of my mouth. It is painful, and just the past few days has gotten more painful. My left ear hurts now (the lump is on the left side of the palate). I have no insurance. I smoke cigarettes and drink beer. I am 45-years-old.

    I am very scared. I am very afraid. I don’t want to be someone that I just hear about – just another statistic. And then I think “What is so special about me?” I thought I could smoke and drink, since nobody like me would ever succumb to those diseases that careless people get.

    As I run my tongue across the roof of my mouth, I actually think I am sensing a second lump. It seems like it is happening so fast.

    God, no. No.

    • pattiredd says:

      Mikey – I am so touched by your reply on Bill’s blog. And, I am frightened for you. Please see a doctor. I know, I know…they aren’t always the brightest bulbs in our lives. However, your wondering and fears need to be resolved. Please take care and find out more (if you can) about what’s going on with you.

      I’ll be thinking about you. Please take care. HUGS.

  15. Marlena says:

    I am 19 years old and this website and everything that everyone has said I really enjoy! I pray dearly for all of you! I believe all I’m dealing with is just anxiety but it feels like I’m dying. Anyways doesn’t matter about me but I wanted to just say that…live each day like its your last!!! Because you never know when the last day will be! I know I am young but I’ve dealt with a lot of deaths in my life…when I was 14 my best friend/cousin died in a car accident, and almost a year ago it will be that my grandpa died from pancreatic cancer. I watched him slowly died..nothing we could do but comfort him…and watched him struggle for air…until the last breath. Its hard to watch someone died when I’m so young but I’ve realized that when we die…we will be in a greater place!

    Sorry I have so much to say but I should prob stop here…

    Btw…some people don’t realize how precious life is and there’s a lot of people take advantage of life…and some people I know are drinking there life away! 😦

    Prayers and going to you all!!! I feel for you all and love you all dearly!

    ❤ Marlena

    Hello Marlena, welcome to the blog and I thank you for your comment. For one as young as youself you have attained great wisdom. Every moment of life is precious enjoy every moment of it.

  16. Ed says:

    Hi everyone,

    My name is Ed, I am 39 with two little children (boy-6yr and girl-4yr). I have been very tired of this world because of the problems i have at home. I have a lot of problems at home with my wife and i am trying to sort it out with her. I cannot understand why people can be so cold and heartless to one another. But, this blog has shown me that there are still a lot of love in this world, a lot of people who still care. This is one of the most beautiful blogs that i have read in a long while.

    I am a Christian and I will pray for all of you. Please believe me that there is a God and he is capable of miracles! many good things have happened to me and I want to share with all of you – God exists and he is great.

    Let me tell you, I was born with one Kidney and 5 years ago, i had chronic kidney failure. I was in ICU for 3 days. Doctor told me that i needed a transplant if my kideny deteriorated. I prayed to GOD and asked him for a miracle. He heard me and i was healed! My doctor refused to believe my test results and i had to repeat the tests 3 times.

    15 yrs ago, my dog was poisoned and dying. The vet told me there is no hope and he will pass on in 2 to 3 hrs. I refused to accept this and I asked God for his help. God heard me and brought my dog back from the brink of death! Within an the hour I asked God for help, my dog, who was breathing his last few breaths before i prayed for him, sat up. 6 hours later, my dog walked home with me! My vet told me it was not possible for a dog to come back from the brink of death and she said it was a miracle!

    Please leave me your name and the illness you have I will pray for you with all my heart!

    Hi Ed and welcome to the blog. I thank you for your kind words and you are so right. This world of ours is just full of loving people.It is so easy, too easy for us to loose sight of that when we are in the midst of a personal “crisis”.
    I have no doubt at all about the power of prayer and I thank you for sharing your personal experiences with us.
    Prayers are always appreciated.I would ask for your prayers for any and all that may have contact with this blog.

  17. sam says:

    hi bill , as far as i know im not sick, but i would like to confess that i am not a good person i can be very mean to other people 1 am 46 years old
    i nearly drowend twice and every time i was saved by what i call was an angle.i would like to say to everyone that i regret the way i treat other people, iwish i could learn to love others like jusus does.
    i hate my life i cant wait for it to end, why does a good person like BILL have to die [CRY] I WISH I COULD HELP ALL OF YOU
    im sorry if i offend anyone, and i love you all

    i forgot to say that i think that all of you here on bills blog are at this point in time are the most decent poeple you will ever find anywere

    • Patti says:

      Comment to Bill – I have gotten some nausea/anti-vomiting meds that help me a little with what you are describing. I would consider talking to your doctor about them – they are helpful.

      Hey Sam, there are people who can and want to help you…my guess is that you are being much too hard on yourself…the fact that you feel the way you do means that you need to reach out to those who love you. They are there. You will beat the battle and come out okay. Your heart will take you there.

    • Bill Howdle says:

      Hi Sam, thank you for visiting my blog and for taking the time to leave a comment.
      Sam I don’t know you or your circumstances in life but what I do know is that as people in general we tend to be our own worst critics. We tend to judge ourselves more harshly than we do others and likely more harshly than others do in fact view us.
      You say you wish you could learn to love others as Jesus does. Well that is something that I do wish I could do. But, I know that to be impossible for you and I are but mere human beings, with the weaknesses and failings that come with being human.
      The love our Heavenly Father has for each of us individually is stronger and more beautiful than anything we can imagine. It is important for us to remember that His love for us is always there.
      I beleive God loves each of us equally. No one is more special or deserving of any different treatment than the next person, you and I are no different.
      As I said before I do not know you or your circumstances but just for the sake of arguement, let’s assume you have done things in the past that you now regret. Well you are not alone there my friend my entire life is littered with suchd happenings.
      I believe that God knows we are but human and there fore does not expect us to be perfect, that would be impossible as we are human.
      What I do believe expects of us is to keep never give up, to keep ttrying to better ourselves. In my own bumbling way that is what I am working on and so can you my friend.
      Today is the first day of the rest of your life. you are dissatisfied with the person you were in the past. Well that is the past and that is who you used to be. Going forward you can work towards becoming the person you want to be. Some times we need outside help to break the patterns that have developed over a life time. Be honest with yourself. If outside help is what you need please get it. None of us are alone in this life of ours.
      Take care my friend and I do hope to hear more from you,.

  18. Diony says:

    May God Bless everyone in here. It’s truly very helpful and informative. I am getting regular pains on my chest and numbness in different parts of my body even while i am typing now. I believe much in instinct. Just like in Business or relationship. God gives us the basic instinct. If we are to leave, we will get signs. However, many of my friends are trying to let me go into denial as my medical is always close to perfect. haha. My old friend told me that those we complains much, will live longer. And those who just keep quiet, will fade away.

    What I want to say is that, death is like an acceptance. A major storm-like. You have no choice. For me, I just want to do whatever i could for others. Especially cancer patients. It is so sad especially when they are children. Being alive is all about living for others. Anyway I am not a saint, a devil in disguise. So I don’t think I leave this planet so fast. Like what everyone says, “Good guys die young”.

    Bill….it’s good to see your post once in a while. It’s kinda scary at times for me. I know i am healthy but I get flash backs. Do pray for me too. I still want to help others 🙂


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  21. hazel says:

    I dont want to know about how it feels to know you are dying. My inquiry is how can i help someone who knows they are dying?

    Hi Hazel, sorry it has taken me a couple of days to reply. I just haven’t been able to get to the computer. Excellent questions and I wish I has a clear anser but it is such an individual personal issue each person will deal with it in their own way. I am going to try and get back on track here and get up a post hopefully tommorow when I will go into this in more detail

  22. Caitlin says:

    Bill, what you have written about the waves really touched me. It is a beautiful metaphor. Thank you. I will take that with me for the rest of my life. I wish you peace in your life and on your journey.

  23. Carol says:

    I am a Gran,mother,wife,sister and friends to lots of people,and I am dying,..I’m not afraid of dying, but I am gutted to be dying at the age of 58 leaving my beautiful family behind,my husband is devastated to think he can’t do anything for me, his hands are tied,as we all are when it comes to death.I want to know what other people do for there families when they no the time is near,do you write letters, or is this to harsh,incase you say things but they misinterpret ,then that stays with them forever? my only Grandson is 7yrs old,I want to leave a letter to him, but very worried it will upset him even more, we are sooo close,he will be making his 1st holy communion soon, If I had to tell him that God had to take me away from him, it will put him off his religion,and my religion means everything to me,because I won’t be around to see him make his communion,this is the hardest thing to deal with.He is everything to me,I love all my family, but they will cope in time,my grandson has came from a broken home,my son is his dad, and has been a great dad,but we have to be very careful how we handle some situations,that’s why it’s so important for me to see he doesn’t give up on his religion.can anyone give me advice so that I can die knowing Ive done my best for him.

    Hi Carol, your comment touches me more than you can know and my heart and prayers goes out to you. Facing your own passing is such a difficult thing, believe me I know. Reading your words I can feel and understand your pain. Within you, you have faith in God and as you do not fear death, you have faith that there is more out there for you once you leave this physical body. All of which is my thinking exactly.
    You love your family deeply and worry how they will make out when you are not there. you love them and I am sure they love you just as much in return. They will go hrough a difficult time of mourning. You will be missed, their lives will never be the same without you.
    Their lives will never be the same again, but be comforted knowing that while their lives won’t be the same it doesn’t mean that with time their lives will be good again.
    Your faith in God has helped you through I am sure a lot in your life, especially with all that is happening now. Know that as God has been in your live, He will be with your son and grandson.
    I encourgage you please look at the blog roll on the right hand side of the screen. There you will find a number of sites I have found to be of benefit personally as I deal with my issues. Please check out the hospice site. It has a lot of wonderful information on death and dying. How to talk to children, how to deal with it as the patient, family etc.. Please check it out.
    I know that just talking can be a wonderful release and please know you are very welcome to return here as often as you would like. Express what ever it is you need to.
    You are in my thoughts, heart and prayers

  24. Julie says:

    No one has written for awhile, I hope this site is still active. I have found reading people’s experience to be insightful, touching and educational. My father died a slow death of cancer. That was 23 years ago when the doctors wouldn’t tell him their best guess as to how long he had to live. So, he suffered, unprepared, believing until the end that he would get better because the doctors never told him he would die from the disease. I found the doctors cruel. This Christmas my mother was diagnosed with cancer and the doctors said that in the best case scenario, she would have 3 years. I am glad she knows, it give her time to organize her life and prepare. On the other side, knowing you are going to die… I can’t even wrap my head around that knowledge. I’ve appreciated with the comments on this page. I need to be able to help her.

    Hi Julie and welcome to the blog. While no one may have posted on this particular page in a while, this is indeed an active site. Please check the right hand side of the screen and you will find the archives of the posts right up until the present. Firstly, may I offer my condolences for the loss of your father. My prayers go out to your mother, you and entire family. Through out this blog I have said many times, that I do believe it is hardest on the families. You are forced to sit there helplessly wanting so badly to be able to so something, anything to help your mother. Ease her pain and suffering while some how wanting to change what we know the future will bring. My heart goes out to you, you are in such a painful difficult place.
    I am glad you found the blog. It has become so much more than just me but is a small community of caring loving people. All here willing to provide you with what ever support we can. I invite you to return, share feelings, frustrations, anger or even to just vent if that is what you are in need of. I am going to try to get an email out to your today.

    PS, hey Julie, I have tried twice but emails don’t seem to want to go through. If you want to chat further please join in here.

  25. Julie says:

    Thanks for your reply and your empathy. Here is what I could use help with. My mom, as I mentioned as been given, at best 3 years to live. There is nothing I have wanted more in my life than a relationship with my mother. She hated me as a child, and has very little to do with me as an adult. And now. . . now she is leaving this world. It may sound selfish, but I can hardly bare the thought that her time has come; and gone forever is my chance to have my mother love me. I’ve spent my entire life mourning the loss of that all important relationship. Now, how do I even begin to mourn the loss of even the slightest hope of ever having that relationship? My siblings gather around her, helping her. I am not welcome. I long to be at her side, now while she is still feeling well, and later when she will be incredibly ill. Even in death, I am denied. I am at a complete loss as to how to cope with this situation. I pray daily that as she declines she will go fast so that she can keep her dignity, but at the same time, all I want is for her to reach out to me in her death and recognize before she leaves this world.

    My email should work now.

    Hi Julie you are in such a tough situation. It is like I can feel your pain through your written words. I can’t even imagine how it must feel, my heart and prayers go out to you. Julie, I have to point out I am not a doctor, not any kind of therapist or man of the clergy. I have no qualifications to speak on anything really. I just do so based on my past experiences and beliefs. I wish I could offer you a solution or really even any words that my provide you with comfort. I am just at a loss as to what to say.
    Obviously I don’t know any of the circumstances with in your family life that have brought you to the point you are. Remember free advice is usually worth about as much as you paid for it. (NOTHING) But, here are just a few thoughts that come to mind.
    This is something that I believe would be very difficult to deal with on your own. This may even sound selfish given the circumstances but you need to focus on what in the long term is the best for you and start working towards that. You mentioned that you pray for your mother, you have beliefs. Sit down with possibly a man of the clergy and just lay it all out. There are family counselors that specialize in this sort of thing. Reach out for assistance in dealing with this. Contact another family member that may be able to act as a mediary. It my require even little baby steps towards restoring the relationship you would like. At least by doing something, you can rest easier knowing you did your best, you tried. I fear that if you don’t at least try you may indeed by guilt ridden.
    You may even have to come to accept that as much as you want this relationship, it is just not meant to be. Please start taking even those little baby steps forward so that one way or the other you can rid yourself of any negative feelings.
    Here on the blog you are weclome, you will find much loving support as you work your way through this.

  26. Adam says:

    Im a 19 yr old boy living what seems to be an empty shell of a life revolving around the belief that I have some form of cancer in my head. Im trying to get it diagnosed but i fear i already know the answer. My mother doesn’t seem to accept what im feeling yet, but im sure she cant do much else than make doctor appointments and try to be strong for me. Ive always been kinda shy and lately ive been ignoring my friends because im unable to face them and act like nothing is wrong. I now live day by day in my room just letting my mind run wild about how im going to tell people and that Ive never done anything memorable or if ill have the time to see the world. For the moment I have very little problems with my body other than the fact I have tinnitus which started about a month ago, and Ive always been relatively skinny and built, but I just wish there was some way I can be mentally strong enough to tell the people i love exactly how I feel, because as of now im pretty depressed about the whole thing. Ive read most of your stories which were all very moving and id just like some advice on how to cope with my situation any advice will be helpful.

    Hi Adam I am sorry to hear of your struggles. Adam, I am not a doctor, not a man of the clergy or any type of therapyst. I am just a man sitting at his computer sharing thoughts and feeling based on my own experiences. Experience tells me to never jump the gun, wait for the doctors to do their tests. They are the experts and can tell us what we do or don’t have. I know that is easy to say and is in fact what we should do but I also know it can be very difficult to control our feelings and emotions. Free advise is usually worth what you pay for it, nothing. So I am not going to give you any, instead I will tell you what I would do given your circumstances as I understand them. I would make an appointment with a regular doctor, go in and see him/her and just flat out tell them everything and I mean everything from smyptoms to feelings they can provide the best treatment if they know the whole story. Follow their advice my friend

  27. Cheryl says:

    I lost my husband from lung cancer just a little over month ago. When he was diagnosed he was told his life will be shortened the doctors did not tell him how many years but they kept asking if he has any question. I assume they want him to ask how long he has to live. He had chemo and radiation that offered some relief of some of his symptoms specially the shortness of breath. He was so positive that he will live a bit longer so he made some plans. Unknown to him I had an uncle who had the same cancer and lived less than 1 year after he was diagnosed and also I did some research on the internet on survival rate and the findings are all the same. He was feeling a bit better after the treatments and made plans to travel in June but the cancer recurred last December and affected his spine that affected his mobility a lot and rapidly. In one of our consultations last December he whispered to me and asked “why don’t doctors tell me how long do I have to live?” I replied to him “why don’t you ask them?” so he did and he was told he has 6-12 weeks. To this day I regret and wonder if knowing he had only that long was of any good, I wonder if that made him feel really sad although I did not see that in him. The cancer on his spine was really very aggressive and we see that he is really getting worse everyday. He passed away exactly after the 6 weeks. I hated it not knowing if I had done enough, if there is anything else I could have done or anything to make him a bit happier or a bit more comfortable or maybe even live a bit longer. I took time off work to look after him full time about 4 weeks before he passed away. He was so brave, 5 days before he died he asked me to email his brothers and sisters to tell them that he might not make it the following week so that if they want come ahead of their plan, which they did. He was also able to talk to them over the phone and they were able to come over 2 days before he passed away. With the help of a pastoral care worker he was able to compile a booklet of his messages and memories for us his family. Despite having looked after him full time attending to all his physical needs, I still feel that I did not do enough. I wished I stayed with him every minute on his last few weeks, I wished I held him in my arms all the time and not let go even for one second, I felt his loneliness and I can still feel it. He stayed at home with us until the last day and was visited by doctors and nurses daily. He did not want to go to the hospital and that’s one thing I am pleased we did because that’s what he wanted and we were able to spend time with him 24 hours. I am also uncertain about the medications they ease the pain and make him sleep a lot and also gives him hallucinations. Is it better that he sleeps a lot or hallucinates without the pain? Will that not make him feel more alone? Should we have let him decide when he should have the pain relief rather than having it given continuously through a pump? Those who knows that they are dying you may feel that you are alone but be assured you are not. My husband and I talked about those who doesn’t have family how hard it is if they get very ill and die alone. It may also be helpful to tell your loved ones or your family what you expect when the time comes so that they are not left in a dilemma and make sure you acknowledge and show your appreciation of what they do so they will not be wondering like me if they have done enough when you are gone. My husband always says he is sorry for leaving everything to me and that he is very thankful that I am with him.

    Hi Cheryl, may I begin by saying how honoured I feel, that you would choose my little spot here in cyber space to share you so touching and so obviously painful message. Your message has really hit me as few others have. It is like I can feel you pain in reading your words and my heart and prayers go out to you and yours. I can’t really begin to imagine how terribly hard these past months have been for you. Your pain is so real, so fresh.
    I don’t think there could be any words that I could say that would be of any comfort. If there are such words please imagine I have said them. The feeling are in my heart, I just don’t know how to write them out.
    You are currently wracked with self doubt questioning yourself, was there more I could have done? Did I make the right decisions about the medications? You are human and it is natural to be questioning ourselves in a situation such as you now find yourself.
    Cheryl , you did the best you could in a very difficult situation. Please know there was nothing more you could have done. You took the time off work so you husband could be at home. Did he not tell you he was glad you were at his side. I think really that pretty much says it all.
    Was it a good idea for the doctor to tell him how much time he had left? Here I can only speak for myself. That is something I would want to know. If I know I have only 6 weeks left as opposed to 6 months, I am going to live that 6 weeks differently as did you husband in putting together those pictures for the family.
    You are going through the terrible grieving process, so hard, so painful. Know you did you best and could have done no more. You spent so much time caring for him and now it is time to start caring for yourself.
    As I said I am so very glad you found my blog and I welcome you to return as often as you would like. I invite you to leave comments as you feel a need to. Here you will find a loving group ready and willing to provide you with all the loving support we can
    You are in my thoughts, my heart and prayers

  28. Cheryl says:

    Thank you Bill, reading your messages makes me feel a bit better.
    Thank you Cheryl. Hearing that someone may have comfort in my words makes this all worth while. Hope to hear from you again

  29. The entire blog is so touching. I have been reading since the beginning. I am a nursing professor and focused on end of life care, especially on the moment of death and first few minutes afterwards.
    Hi Marilyn, I am so happy to have you join us. With your back ground you have knowledge and in sights beyond that which many of us possess. I invite you to please share with us both from your experience and knowledge. I look forward to hearing more from you.

  30. I wondered if the metaphor of knowing you are dying–standing on the beach and being hit by waves and getting knocked down over and over still seems accurate? Posted some time ago.
    Hi Marilyn and welcome to the blog. I thank you for the reminder of the waves. When I am posting I just write my thoughts at the moment. I suppose as it is with all thoughts some times they are there and then just gone. Well, I am memory guy. I am going to do a post on this in the next few days. Yes, that is still a very accurate comparison, for me anyway. The height and strength of those waves can vary day by day or even hour by hour, as does the resolve and energy it seems to take to regain that footing

  31. […] via Dying Man’s Daily Journal – To Know You are Dying | Dying mans daily journal. […]

  32. ps470007 says:

    Lots of emotions and very rational.

    thank you

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