By Mark Pickup
Since becoming a grandparent, I have been annoying friends with pictures of my grandchildren. In fact, at one point I sent so many photos by e-mail to my friend Bob Schindler (the late father of Terri Schiavo), the sheer volume crashed his computer! After apologizing profusely, I decided to take the hint and scale back on my grandfatherly e-mail boasting.
Yes, being a grandparent is proving to be one of the best and happiest phases of my life, and that brings me to the point of this short blog.
I have had an aggressive form of multiple sclerosis for 26 years. In the early years after being diagnosed, I was often affected by a series of terrifying roller-coaster rides of MS attacks. I would go to bed at night not knowing what function I would wake up with or without. It was horrible! At times, it was only the very real presence of Christ in my life and the love of my family that sustained me.
If I had despaired of life and if assisted suicide had been available (like in Oregon and Washington state), and if I had taken that option … look what I would have missed! My five grandchildren bring me unspeakable joy and happiness.
My annoying people with emailed pictures of my grandchildren is really just another way for me to say I am able to celebrate life in all its stages, phases and eventualities—despite a disease that is slowly destroying me. My disease and electric wheelchair cannot take away my joy.
Euthanasia and assisted suicide acceptance is often fueled by fear of the future. But today is the tomorrow I feared yesterday. My todays are filled with the only thing that ultimately matters in life: love.
Euthanasia not only kills people, it kills the potential to love and be loved.
This blog is reprinted with permission. About the author: In 1984, at age 30, Mark Pickup was diagnosed with aggressive multiple sclerosis; he is now triplegic. Mark has spoken throughout the U.S. and Canada to promote the sanctity of life and the dignity of all human beings, and is also a widely published writer on bioethical and Christian matters. His wife, LaRee, is the provincial director of the Alberta Pro-Life Association. Mark and LaRee have developed a gripping presentation chronicling their personal experiences titled “The Search for Meaning in Suffering: A Christian Perspective,” a three-part seminar suitable for retreats and conferences. To book them as speakers, call 780-929-9230 or e-mail "> // . Read all of Mark’s blogs at http://humanlifematters.org and markpickup.org.