Monday, November 28, 2011

The Last Moment of Wangari Maathai

On Mon, 11/7/11, Njeri Mbire wrote:
Maathai is driven to her final admission at Nairobi Hospital. She explains her diagnosis to doctors at the facility. Her condition has reached what doctors call Metastic level – that is has spread beyond the ovaries to other critical body organs including the liver and is spreading fast.
She is complaining of abdominal swelling, pain and abnormal bleeding. She is weak. The focused Nobel Peace Prize winner is admitted to Pioneer ward – a ward next to both the High Dependency Unit (HDU) and Intensive Care Unit (ICU). Things are getting out of proportion. Top cancer surgeons have gathered to deal with the urgent case.

By default, she chooses not to get the pleasures of the posh North Wing like most of the privileged class would do. Former President Daniel arap Moi, Prime Minister Raila Odinga, President Mwai Kibaki, Makadara MP Michael Mbuvi among others have always enjoyed the Five Star medical treatments available in the North Wing.
Typical of Maathai, the fighter for the down-trodden, argues: “There are no five star patients and still wanted the company offered by a ward.”

After tests, doctors give her options to consider. 1) Surgery -- however that would mean doing away with several of her organs a list of which we choose not to publish for privacy reasons.
Of course any such action would be followed by chemotherapy and from her Cancer blood test - which doctors called “CA 125” it is clear any surgery would require a chemotherapy session every week.
Even then, “such treatment is only effective and sufficient for malignant tumors that are well-differentiated and confined to the ovary.” Her condition has even touched “the spleen and the lungs,” doctors tell her. (one of them was speaking)
Maathai asks: “So after the surgery what will be my quality of life?”
Doctors answer: “It depends on how your body reacts.” The doctors go ahead to explain how different people reacted to similar conditions.
“How long does it guarantee I will live?” she asks doctors, taking the off guard.
Later one of them reflects: “I was a little shocked because normally patients ask that before quality of life”
“Well, it guarantees an extension of life to about six months to five years,” doctors explains.
Then Maathai poses a question: “What if I don’t go that route of chemotherapy and surgery?”
“Well it will spread very fast and will arrest your key organs and that may cause death,” doctors explain, hoping she might reconsider the path she was now taking.
“Well instead of spending the rest of my six or five years postponing death and spending money and resources that would make my family happy, let me surrender to the creator,” Maathai says, according to two surgeons who were talking to her.
Attempts to make the option of surgery and chemotherapy fail and doctors give her a day to reconsider her decision.

Finally, as per Nairobi Hospital policy, doctors are forced to ask hard questions.
“When it spreads to the rest of your organs It may cause cardiac arrest (Read Heart Attack) can we install a cardiac warning bell,” doctors tell her.
“For what purpose is such a bell?” she asks.
“Well” one of the hospital administrators who attended the meeting says, “to help us resuscitate you in case something happens and probably rush you to HDU or ICU for attention.”
Our sources explain that Maathai sits on her pillow and with a firm but friendly (sic) look says: “If that happens, let it happen, don’t intervene.”
“Why?” they almost reacted (this is unprofessional).
She responds: “Because life is not about me only, it’s about many other people and I am still strong.”

As required by policy, they then ask her to tell her family to sign the DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) forms clearing the hospital of any responsibility should the eventuality happen.
Again, she says she would put pen to paper, “without subjecting anyone to the decision about her.”
The decision she made shortly after 4 pm, just two days before she died.
....... (ends)

No comments:

My Passion, my focus, the change that I want to see in the world - is my propellent factor.

Label Cloud

Gender (72) Feminism (46) Interview Thursday (46) Gender Equality (38) Gender and Development (29) Cat lover (24) Poem (24) Cat Tuesday (22) Women's Human Rights (19) Cats World (16) 16 Days of Activism (11) Africa (11) Violence Against Women (8) Information Sharing (7) Music (7) Nigeria Development (7) Women and Leadership (7) Children Rights (6) Exprience (6) Leadership (6) Rest in Peace (6) Change and Development (5) Corruption (5) Day to Day Exprience (5) Events (5) Governance (5) MDGs (5) Peace and Security Fellowship for African Women (5) Relationship (5) Security and Development (5) Women (5) Call for Application (4) Change Maker (4) Dairy (4) Mistake (4) Navy abuse of Uzoma Okere (4) Nigeria in Focus (4) Relationship and Marriage (4) The Feminist Cats (4) BlogHer (3) Chicago July Trip (3) Children (3) Discrimination Against Women (3) Domestic Violence (3) Injustice (3) King;s College Fellowship (3) Lessons (3) Niger Delta Crisis (3) Online Community (3) Religion Matters (3) Travelling (3) Wedding (3) Women Activists (3) Women Empowerment (3) Women in Governance (3) Youth (3) democracy in Nigeria (3) 2009 Edition (2) A girl-Soldier (2) Activism (2) Annivesary (2) BlogHer Conference Scholarship (2) Bloggers for life (2) Democracy and its Struggle (2) Female writers (2) Forced Marriage (2) IAC09 (2) ICT4D (2) International Wome's Rights Day 2008 (2) Journey to London (2) LGBTI (2) Lack of respect for other people's perspectives. (2) Life from Cape Town in South Africa (2) Lovely Cats (2) Male Child Preference (2) Male Child and Domestic Chores (2) Memories (2) My Boss (2) My life in London (2) Nigerian Youth and Development (2) Nigerianstalk (2) No to VAW (2) Rape (2) Sexual Violence and GBV (2) Taking Peace and Security (2) Technology Camp for Girls (2) The Admired Female Bloggers (2) The Changemakers (2) The Future of Nigerian children (2) The Late Kudirat Abiola's Remembrance (2) The Martyr of Democracy (2) The girl child and her chanllenges (2) Untimely death (2) Uzoma Okere court hearing (2) V-Monologues (2) Violation of Human Rights (2) Women making a difference (2) 10 years remembrance for the O.A.U 5. (1) 1in 9 Campaign (1) 2010 self-surfacing resolutions (1) A Ride with my Father (1) A just world with God (1) ALF Program (1) AWID Forum 2008 (1) Activism Scholarship (1) Adaeze Experience (1) African Sexualities (1) Aspiring Filmmaker (1) Bad Leaders (1) Beating by a mad man (1) Becoming my Cats (1) CSDG (1) Career (1) Child Marriage (1) Children without education (1) Children without future (1) Climate Change (1) Conflicts (1) Corrpution and Hooliganism (1) Court System (1) DLTW for Young Female Doctors (1) Democracy Day (1) Divorce and Marriage (1) Dupe In Kenya (1) ECOSAP (1) Evangelist Taye Ajiboye (1) Extreme poverty (1) Female Circumcision (1) Female Film-Makers (1) Girls in Technology (1) Global Warming (1) Government (1) Hafsat Abiola and KIND (1) Human Behaviour and attitudes (1) I didn't do it for you by Michela Wrong (1) ICT and Women (1) Images from Mali (1) Incest (1) Indecent Dressing Bill (1) Info -Activism (1) Internattional Bloggers Community Award (1) Job Search (1) Journey across Africa (1) June 8 and Abacha’s death (1) Kenya July Trip (1) Knowing our continent (1) Lagos State Government (1) MOBILIZATION (1) Mali (1) Marriage (1) Michela Wrong book on Eritrea (1) Mother 6th Remembrance (1) Movement Building. AWID Forum 2008 (1) My first post from London (1) My health (1) NDQ Interview (1) Naija Blogger Awards 2009 (1) Natural Hair (1) Negative quotation on women (1) Newspaper review (1) Nigeria Media (1) Nigerian Sporting Activities (1) Nigerians and Abacha’s death (1) No light (1) No to FGM (1) Obama Prank (1) Outsanding Ore (1) PHCN and Nigeria Government (1) Passing though Ghana (1) Passing through Burkina Security and Development (1) Pastor Kehinde Ajiboye (1) Peace and Secuirty issues in the Horn (1) Police Force (1) Polygamist (1) Pregnancy and child bearing in marriage (1) Punishment of an elderly woman in Saudi (1) Rape Victim (1) Road and Bus Evangelism (1) Road trip to Mali (1) SOLIDARITY WTH WOMEN WHO SPEAK OUT (1) Self Defence for Women (1) Senseless killing by armed robbers (1) Serious Issues (1) Standtall Adevnture (1) Suicide bombing (1) Summit (1) Tactical Tech (1) Take Back the Tech (1) Tell Magazine (1) Terrorist Attack (1) The Uncoventional Clergy woman (1) The Bauchi Killings (1) The EU Summit Report (1) The Eritrea history (1) The July 10 Martyr (1) The Liberian Women peace building effort (1) The O.A.U 5 (1) The PM Tabloid (1) The danger of a single story (1) The late social Crusader (1) The meeting with London Bloggers (1) The rescued kitten (1) This Violence must stop (1) Tips to having a Happy Relationship (1) Traditional Role (1) Transforming Nigeria (1) Travelling through Africa by Road (1) Tribute to Chief Gani Fawehinmi (1) Tyranny (1) Umar Mutallab (1) Understanding Security (1) Uzoma's Justice (1) Verastically Vera (1) WORLD AIDS DAY (1) We need peace in our land (1) Women E-Campaigners` Training (1) Women In Technology. ICT4D (1) Wrong Culture and Belief (1) Yar'adua (1) Youth as agents of Change (1) meeting US bloggers (1) my love (1)