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When former Oregon Governor Barbara Roberts' husband, State Senator Frank Roberts, was dying from lung cancer, she had to look inside of herself as well as beyond herself to find ways to survive what felt unbearable. What Barbara Roberts learned during the final year of her husband's life, and her subsequent years of grieving, fill the pages of this honest and inspiring new book.
At the time of Frank's cancer recurrence, Barbara was governor of Oregon, and Frank was an Oregon State Senator — both passionately committed to their work and to one another. They also strongly supported Oregon's Death with Dignity Act, which allowed physician-assisted death. The law had not yet passed, and their was lively debate throughout Oregon whether or not to permit this law. Together they had faced many challenges, but Frank's impending death would be their final, and perhaps their most trying and enriching journey. The Robertses turned to hospice for guidance and assistance once Frank decided to stop medical intervention.
This practical and compassionate guide looks at the personal as well as the societal issues surrounding death and grief. Written for both the individual facing death and for those who must grieve after a death, Roberts offers readers enthusiastic support to abandon the silence that too often accompanies impending death and those who must grieve. Chapter titles include "A Culture in Denial," "Hospice," and "Permission to be Weird."
Barbara K. Roberts is the former Oregon governor (1991-1995) and has been active in Oregon politics since the early 1970s. Over the years she has been involved with Oregon's hospice movement, and Oregon's right-to-die movement. In addition to this book, Roberts has also written her autobiography, Up the Capitol Steps: A Woman's March to the Governorship. Roberts lives in Portland, OR.
Ann Jackson was the director of the Oregon Hospice Association, retiring in 2008. She was also a member of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organizations' (NHPCO) National Quality Advisory Council. Currently, Jackson works as a consultant with individuals and families with end-of-life issues. Jackson lives in Portland, OR.