“Goodbye to all my dear friends and family that I love. Today is the day I have chosen to pass away with dignity in the face of my terminal illness, this terrible brain cancer that has taken so much from me – but would have taken so much more.
The world is a beautiful place, travel has been my greatest teacher, my close friends and folks are the greatest givers. I even have a ring of support around my bed as I type. …Goodbye world. Spread good energy. Pay it forward!”
On January 1, 2014, Brittany was diagnosed with glioblastoma, the deadliest form of brain cancer. The prognosis is grim and the treatment causes rapid weight gain and the swelling of the face. The treatment is used to minimize the effects of her seizures and the swelling in her brain. In April, Brittany was given six months to live. After mulling over her end of life choices, Brittany and her family moved from California to Oregon, one of the five states in the U.S. that has legalized death with dignity.
She told PEOPLE Magazine that she would dissolve her prescription of 100 capsules of secobarbital into a glass of water and drink it. In this way, she would die “painlessly and peacefully” surrounded by her husband, mother, stepfather and best friend in her bedroom at home.
“I don’t want to die but I am dying,” Brittany told PEOPLE magazine. “My [cancer] is going to kill me, and it’s a terrible, terrible way to die. So to be able to die with my family with me, to have control over my own mind, which I would stand to lose – to go with dignity is less terrifying.”
Before she passed, Brittany ticked off the last item on her bucket list, which as to visit the Grand Canyon. She also asked her family to carry on her work with the death with dignity movement, hoping to get it in every state across the United States.
For more information on the death with dignity movement and Brittany’s work, click here.