Bailey Matheson said no to chemotherapy and radiation after being diagnosed with cancer because she wanted to let "nature take its course."
The one thing that most of us fear the most is death, even though it is inevitable. We try to hold on to life as we know it until the very last moment. However, people like Bailey Jean Matheson show us what it truly means to enjoy life and not let the fear of death get the better of you. Matheson died on April 5, 2019, after a two-year battle with cancer. She said no to chemo and radiation after being diagnosed because she wanted to let "nature take its course." But, before she bid farewell to the world, she had one final message to share with her friends, family, and her loved ones.
She used her obituary to say her final goodbye. According to CTV News, the brave woman was diagnosed with leiomyosarcoma, a soft tissue cancer. She was granted one year to live by her doctor and decided to live life to the fullest. She even took the time to write down a heart-warming obituary that urged people not to "take the small stuff so seriously and live a little." In her obituary that was published in The Chronicle Herald, she wrote, "Thirty-five years may not seem long, but damn it was good!" Matheson, an only child to her parents, ran her own beauty business.
After learning that she had incurable cancer, the strong woman did not give up hope, despite her decision to say no to chemotherapy so she could “live the rest of my life the way I believed it should be." She thanked her parents for letting her decide her treatment: "To my parents, thank you for supporting me and my decisions throughout my life. I always remember my mom saying losing a child would be the hardest loss a parent could go through. My parents gave me the greatest gift of supporting my decisions with not going through chemo and just letting me live the rest of my life the way I believed it should be."
Treatment for cancer is as aggressive as it can be and is known to take a toll on the people undergoing it as well as the ones who try and lend support. "Matheson didn't want chemotherapy to reduce the quality of the time she had left," said her close friend Jenn Irvine, as per CBC News. She also added that Matheson was so brave that she never feared death instead "She feared more of unlived life and leaving us behind". She pushed her diagnosis to the back of her head and decided to really live her life. She made a bucket list and made sure she fulfilled each one of them with a smile on her face.
Ticking one wish off her bucket list, Matheson and her friends went to Chicago in 2017 after her diagnosis. She just wanted to have a good time with her friends, and they even got matching tattoos based on a drawing made by Matheson. “She was full of life. She was the most caring, giving person. Everyone that met her fell in love with her. She always put everybody before herself," said Julie Carrigan. Her friends were all astonished by the strength she had and spoke of her with admiration. “She made it so that we could talk to her about cancer and that there would be a time she wouldn’t be here,” added Carrigan.
The young woman thanked her friends in her obituary for their "unconditional love and support" in making "something that is so hard, more bearable and peaceful." She also remembered to show her gratitude to her boyfriend Brent, whom she met three months before the diagnosis. "I couldn't have asked for a better man to be by my side for all the adventures, appointments, laughs, cries, and breakdowns." Along with writing her obituary, the woman also planned and paid for funeral ceremonies. Matheson also asked people to make donations to Melanie’s Way or Young Adults Cancer Canada instead of bringing her flowers at her funeral. Hopefully, she's in a better place, now, without any pain and suffering.