Terminal cancer patient Brittany Maynard released a new video via nonprofit Compassion & Choices, discussing her controversial decision to end her life on what she originally planned to be Saturday, Nov. 1.
The emotional update, recorded Oct. 12 to 13, was posted to 29-year-old Maynard's website, The Brittany Fund, on Wednesday, Oct. 29. "If November 2 has come along and I’ve passed," she says, "I hope my family is still proud of me and the choices I made. And if November 2 comes along and I’m still alive, I know that we’ll just still be moving forward as a family out of love for each other, and that the decision will come later."
When the video was shot, Maynard claimed: "I still feel good enough and I still have enough joy and I still laugh and smile with my family and friends enough that it doesn't seem like the right time. Right now. But, it will come because I feel myself getting sicker. It's happening each week."
Maynard's story went viral this past month after she publicly disclosed why she was choosing to end her life. The California native, who was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer on New Year's Day, was told in April that her life expectancy would be curtailed to "six months" after an abnormally large brain tumor was found. Maynard moved to Oregon, which has a "Death With Dignity" law. "It's not suicide," she previously insisted in a segment on The Meredith Vieira Show.
In her latest video, the cancer patient tells viewers about the "most terrifying aspects" about her illness. "Most recently, my most terrifying set of seizures was about a week or so ago. I had two in a day, which was unusual, and I remember looking at my husband's face at one point thinking, 'I know this is my husband and I can't say his name.'"
Her husband, Dan Diaz, also discusses his wife's struggle, saying it's really shifted his perspective on what's most important in life. "It sounds so cliche: We take things one day at a time," Diaz says in the new video. "It's the only way to get through this. You take away the material stuff, all the nonsense we all seem to latch onto as a society, and you realize those moments are what matter."
Maynard admits that she's received some hurtful remarks from critics, who question whether she's truly ill. "People sometimes look at me and say, 'Well, you don't really look as sick as you say you are,'" she tearfully reveals. Still, she's trudging along and living her life to the utmost, having already completed her bucket list.
"Since January 1st of my diagnosis, health-wise things have been getting worse," she explains. "The worst thing that happens to me is I wait too long because I'm trying to seize each day and I lose my autonomy."
Watch the emotional clip above.
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