On Nov. 1, Brittany Maynard plans to end her life. "There is not a cell in my body that is suicidal or that wants to die," she says in a story in People magazine. "I want to live. I wish there was a cure for my disease but there's not."
Maynard, 29, has been diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor. Her entire family moved with her from California to Portland, Oregon, earlier this year so she could have access to Oregon's Death with Dignity Act, which has been in place since 1997. Under the act, she can legally kill herself with prescribed lethal medication. Experts tell her that death by stage 4 glioblastoma would be "a terrible, terrible way to die," Maynard says.
She was a newlywed when she started having debilitating headaches last January, People reports. In April, she was told she had six months to live. "My entire family has gone through a cycle of devastation," she says. "I'm an only child. For my mother, it's really difficult, and for my husband as well, but they've all supported me because they've stood in hospital rooms and heard what would happen to me."
When Maynard dies on Nov. 1, her husband, mother, stepfather, and best friend will be at her side. "I'm dying, but I'm choosing to suffer less," she says, "to put myself through less physical and emotional pain and my family as well."