Thursday, March 31, 2005

Rest, Terri

Maya Bell, Orlando Sentinel, writes about the death of Terri Schiavo:

For three years, Michael Schiavo kept vigil at her side, seeking aggressive rehabilitative therapy. He took her to California for experimental surgery, admitted her to a brain injury center in Bradenton and hired an aide to take her to parks, to museums, to the beauty shop -- anything to stimulate her. Later, he even became a critical care nurse so he could tend to her many needs.

But nothing drew Terri out of her cocoon and, by 1994, her husband accepted her doctors' prognosis. Her cerebral cortex was all but gone. She could not think, feel, reason or communicate and never would again. He decided it was time to let her go.

In 1998, he asked Pinellas County Circuit Judge George W. Greer to end his wife's artificial feedings and, over the objections of her parents, Greer agreed in 2000 that her husband had presented "clear and convincing evidence" she would not choose to subsist in a void, unaware of her environment, always dependent on others for her most basic needs.

The public may think that Michael Schiavo is a heartless bastard. I don't. In fact, I think he sets the bar very high for spouses. I wouldn't expect my wife to go through this for me. I wouldn't want her to go through this for me.

Before we villify Michael Schiavo, let's walk in his shoes. Eight years is a long time to wait for a miracle. What more could he have done? Wait? And wait?

I feel so sorry for everyone involved in this.

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