There’s no way around it. This post is pretty depressing and sad. But, these people deserve to have their stories out in the world for us to read. Witness more incredible stories from these Reddit users.
1. Polycystic Liver and Polycystic Kidney Disease, Untreatable Anemia. Organs look like they have chicken pox, so many cysts they won’t count them. Most are less than a cm, except for the two in the liver that are about 3cm across and growing. My kidney numbers suck for someone my age (42). 65% kidney function this year. Next year, it’ll be less. Saving up for a transplant I’m statistically unlikely to get, and won’t hope for one because someone else would have to die so that I could live.
What’s my day like? 100% normal, unless it isn’t. If I’m not sick, it’s like any other day. I’m taking off the excess weight. Very limited alcohol, no pain relievers unless I just can’t take it anymore. I’ve got a husband and kids who have their own lives and I can’t have them wasting my time feeling sorry for me. All I can do is raise them up to be independent with strong family bonds. I don’t expect to see 60. Hell, 50’s starting to look suspect. But every day is a gift. Some days, that’s all I’ve got, but it’s something.
2. Inoperable Brain Aneurysm I don’t make long term goals or set too high of expectations for myself. I’ve found work that allows me to help people who really need it. I read a lot, and I think a lot, and I try to have fun hobbies.
I’ve made it a habit to not dwell on what can’t be fixed. I just do what I do; I know how fruitless it is to fight an enemy that refuses the very concept of the struggle.
3. Liver Cancer Here. Metastatic, Bad. Result of extreme iron-overload undetected for far too long. There is nothing that can be done.
So, really any day now. But here is the thing, we are all dying. Ever second that goes by is one second closer to it. So today, tomorrow, next week, next year….all of those moments are way more valuable than you realize. You don’t understand how short life is until you can see the end. I’m 42. I won’t live to see my daughter graduate from high school. I won’t see go to prom, go to college, get married, have kids, all of that. I won’t be here to comfort her when she gets her heartbroken. I won’t be here to support her, take care of her, and watch out for her. My wife is a wreck. Some days it’s like I’m already dead, and she’s just lost in grief. There are no words to make her feel better. I cannot tell her everything is going to be okay because I am going to die. She knows it, I know it, and there is no easy way to accept that.
Day to day? Make the best out of it. I’m not blowing money left and right because I want to leave it behind for my girls. Quit smoking. Ironic. Spend a lot of time getting my shit together for when I am gone. Who I want to have what. Insurance, bills, finances sorted out and set up to make it as easy as possible for my wife at the transition. Have written some letters for my daughter to get when she is older. Have put together a lot of home videos from when she was little, stuff she won’t remember and I won’t be around to tell her about… early birthdays, time we spent together, I want her to have those memories. Made two videos, one for my wife and one for my girl. I want them to be able to see me happy, not hurting, see my face, and hear my voice. Got my shit together as far as last wishes, when I want them to pull the plug and let me go, how I don’t want a funeral. I’ve set aside money for them to throw a party as a memorial. Drink and eat and share good memories.
Other than that I go to work when I can, work from home when I can’t. Spend as much time with my girls, my parents, my sister’s family, and my dogs as humanly possible. Eat good steak, drink good alcohol, enjoying every sunrise, sunset, and moment in between. We all have to make the best of what we’ve got while we’ve got it. There is no better time than today, because tomorrow isn’t promised to any of us.
4. I’m 30. Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. I’ve been saying I have about a month left, for like the last 4 months. I am progressively getting worse though, and now I truly think it’s about a month. The main thing for me is not planning anything more than 4-5 days in advance. I may end up in hospital by then (a regular occurence) or I may be dead by then! There’s a lot of living in the moment, and being selfish, which nobody holds against you. I’m constantly torn between purging all my belongings to make the process easier on my parents, or just leaving things the way they are. Also, I go back and forth between almost making ridiculous purchases (sports car), and giving all my savings to my sister/using it to pay for my funeral. I’ve come to terms with dying. I’ve mentioned this on r/cancer. The main thing for me is being comfortable. I don’t want pain. Which is tough, because i’m in pain 24/7 haha. It’s just crazy how in a year I’ve transformed from a muscular, handsome, wonderful, caring, thoughtful person if i may toot my own horn, to a f***ing burden that people just worry about and dont know what to say around.
5. 53 Year Old Woman, ALS. Rapidly Progressing. Every day I get worse, couldn’t get my shirt on today. I tend to get up (which is a struggle) get dressed and then sit at my computer here for an hour or so in the morning. Hang out on my couch and read and watch tv. And if the weather is nice, roll out onto my porch to read in the sunshine.
Not really enough strength and energy to eat, though I am being yelled at for losing weight. No pain, for which I am thankful, but unable to do most things we take for granted. I have T-Rex arms now, probably won’t be able to walk or stand in the next few weeks. I am working hard to get the prescription for Death with dignity—this is not how I want to live, have had time to get my affairs in order which is good, but this sucks. I got the neuro the other day to say I have less than 6 months, I think I’ll be luck to make it to Christmas, more like early November at this rate. I don’t want to live like this anymore.
6. The “Less Than 5 Years to Live” Talk Up until this point I haven’t traveled much…whether it is because I had no money, or no time. Probably both. But it’s all I want to do.
In a way, now I have all of the time in the world. I want to see things the way others do that live in other lands, I want to just experience this planet as much as I can. We’re on a tiny speck of dust and it’s all we have, I want to experience it all and not have it be a waste. I want to show people compassion, and love. I want to donate my money; I want to help people out in their time of need. I want to make at least one person’s life better.
I want to make the world a better place than when I came. Help clean up the earth, take care of animals and volunteer.
Because mine is going to be stolen sooner than it should have been, I want to make others better.
7. Brain Tumor Here, 30 Years Old. The rest of my life seems like it will be less than ideal. I found out 9 months ago and my wife immediately left me because she couldn’t deal with it. I don’t blame her as I had begun suffering massive memory loss and honestly could not remember many of our experiences anyways.
My parents were worried about me given the situation and when i didn’t answer the phone (I was out getting food). Called the police. Police showed up and entered my empty apartment and searched around until they found a knife collection I had in a drawer. Due to some state laws a few weeks later I received a letter charging me with various misdemeanors and felonies. I later accepted a deal pleading to a misdemeanor, lots of community service, “therapy”, continued working and probation until I die. Violating any of these means I will end my life in prison.
The court case combined with the divorce completely bankrupted me. I cannot even pay my medical bills despite having excellent insurance (I cannot afford $80 for another MRI).
So to summarize how my week looks? I go to work every day and do the best I can so I don’t lose my job. I miss legitimate medical appointments as all my sick and vacation time goes to making court mandated therapy sessions. My weekends are spent doing community service because of the number of hours I must complete per month. There is no checking things off the bucket list, there is no money to do anything I would like to do. I cant travel as I no longer have vacation and am not allowed to leave the state. Most of the time I am uncomfortable. Sometimes due to pain, but usually because I cannot remember names or experiences. When anyone finds out I have memory loss they all act like an idiot and ask “oh, can you remember this?” Guess what.. sometimes I can, sometimes I cant. Please stop asking.. it is embarrassing.
To be honest, the rest of my life (however long that may be.. and there are some pretty good guesses) looks pretty dismal.