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Terri Schiavo Was Unavailable For Comment

 

 

Dr. Peter Saunders wrote

The Sunday Times today tells the story of Martin Pistorius, a South African man who ended up paralyzed and comatose following a throat infection at the age of 12. His awareness began to improve four years later and by the age of 19 had fully returned.

However it was a further five years before a therapist noticed that he was trying to communicate. The penny eventually dropped that he had been aware of everything going on around him for almost ten years whilst everybody had assumed he was unconscious.

As the opening question in what NPR says is a new program on human behavior called “Invisibila” [“how invisible things shape our behavior and our lives”], Lulu Miller asks

What would you do if you were locked in your body, your brain intact but with no way to communicate? How do you survive emotionally when you are invisible to everyone you know and love?

Miller writes in more detail, but the picture of Martin’s early years is grimly the same. In the late 1980s, at age 12 he came down with a mysterious disease which got progressively worse (the best guess doctors could make was cryptococcal meningitis). Interestingly, Miller never uses what came to be the final diagnosis: locked-in syndrome

Eventually he lost even his ability to make eye contact and finally his capacity to speak. His parents were told to take him home to prepare for his death, but Martin did not die.

His parents’ steadfast commitment to his care is remarkable. For example, his dad, Rodney, got up at the crack of dawn, Miller writes, and would

get him dressed, load him in the car, take him to the special care center where he’d leave him.

“Eight hours later, I’d pick him up, bathe him, feed him, put him in bed, set my alarm for two hours so that I’d wake up to turn him so that he didn’t get bedsores,” Rodney says.

That was their lives, for 12 years

Still Miller does not paint Martin’s parents as some sort of plaster saints. Joan Miller, not thinking her son was “there” to could hear her,

vividly remembers looking at Martin one day and saying: “‘I hope you die.’ I know that’s a horrible thing to say,” she says now. “I just wanted some sort of relief.”

What she couldn’t know of her boy who “just kept going, just kept going,” was that the now-39-year-old Martin heard her perfectly, not from the beginning of his “vegetative” state, but from about two years later when he was around 14.

Go here to read the rest.

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Donald R. McClarey

Cradle Catholic. Active in the pro-life movement since 1973. Father of three and happily married for 35 years. Small town lawyer and amateur historian. Former president of the board of directors of the local crisis pregnancy center for a decade.

9 Comments

  1. The rational, immortal, human soul has the faculties of free will and intellect. The soul leaves the body when the soul can no longer abide in it. This is death.
    .
    Martin’s soul stayed. It must have hurt him when his mother said she wished that he would die, but then, too, he must have had some concept of how much suffering he brought to her, and this might have brought him around sooner. Charity begins at home.
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    The greater crime of Michael Schiavo is that he refused to return Terry to her family who fought in court for her life. Michael Schiavo is a death monger who sold his soul to the devil. Good luck with that ladies.
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    Terry had her soul. If atheism had not been established by our courts and imposed on a free people, Terry would be alive and well today. Terry Schindler Schiavo is the saint and standard of our times for the founding principle of the Right to Life.

  2. Terri Shiavo was alive. She was murdered. Pure and simple. Murdered. This video demonstrates she was alive and thinking, and her husband had her put to death.

  3. Rodney, Martins father, a superb example of Charity begins at home.
    The Locked In Syndrome explanation in the story above, and Martins ability to get through each day battling and displacing his thoughts was remarkable.

    Terry Schiavo IS proud of you Mr. McClarey…great post.

  4. Not only did Michael Schiavo have his wife murdered by starvation and dehydration but he had the audacity to then marry his concubine in a Catholic Church in Safety Harbor, Florida !!!!! Did the Bishop of St. Petersburg give a dispensation for this sacrilege? Who knows? Now, you may say, he had repented before receiving the Holy Sacrament of Matrimony. Hopefully, but the book he wrote did not in any way show remorse for the crime he committed against Terri.

  5. Marguerite, If I were the wife of Michael Schiavo, I would run and hide for my life. Does she believe he has changed from a cold blooded, conniving murderer to a warm loving husband?..like climbing in bed with a snake.

  6. I recently read that a marriage is invalid if one murders his former spouse in order to marry another. So one may speculate that Michael Schiavo’s current “marriage” is not a marriage, even though it occurred in a church.

Comments are closed.