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JackAdams's avatar

You are informed by several doctors that, due to some incurable (or inoperable) physical condition, you have "two more years, maximum" to live. So, how do you spend those remaining two years of your life?

Asked by JackAdams (6507points) August 28th, 2008

Do you contact those who you have wronged in your past, to atone for any transgressions made against them? Do you take off on an around-the-world trip, to finally see all of those places you wish you had previously visited? Do you “get even” with your enemies?

At least two Hollywood productions dealt with this situation: One was the dramatic TV series, “RUN FOR YOUR LIFE,” detailed at: and the other was a comedic movie with Jerry Lewis, called, “HOOK, LINE & SINKER,” at

August 28, 2008, 5:57 AM EDT

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6 Answers

SeekerSeekiing's avatar

I’d continue as I am now. I grew up knowing life could end in a nano-second, so I have always pretty much said what I meant and said sorry when I was, and always always let the folks who I love KNOW that I love them daily.

And I look at death as the ‘next big adventure,’ so other than manner, it’s not a scary thing. I’d just love my family and friends…take in the sunsets…walk the mountains and know I am blessed.

tinyfaery's avatar

Assuming I were ambulatory, free of pain, and not needing to be hooked up to machines, I’d sit down, make a list of everything I ever wanted to see or experience, and go at it. The list would include: see Scotland, SCUBA dive, touch a tiger, and ride on the back of a Harley, to begin with…

jcs007's avatar

I will fight to the bloody end and throw myself at the mercy of the researchers that have even the slightest chance of helping me. If researchers seriously can’t do anything at all, then I’d do what Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman did in The Bucket List.

whatthefluther's avatar

Ah, a questrion tailor-made for me. I was given several years more than two years but I don’t believe I would make any significant changes, just condense the time periods. First thing is to fully understand your condition and how it will change through time so you’ll know what you’ll be physically capable of doing and for how long. It is imporant, as well, to come to terms with your condition so that thinking about it or trying to understand it doesn’t become too consuming. Take time to research, talk to doctors, review with family, etc.
Now you know what lies ahead and can plan accordingly. It would be nice if you were financially secure so you wouldn’t have any difficulties just getting by and you would have the means to do some things you’d like to do. Well, you either had a premonition, were damn smart or darn lucky becaause you opted in on that long term disability insurance policy the major corporation you worked for offererd you. You’re guaranteed 60% of your final salary after taxes every year for the remainder of your life and you did pretty well working for that company. And that final salary didn’t include all that companies matching shares with which you built a rrather large IRA, which you deftly and successfully investmented over the years. We’ll just say it is a more than comfortable, rather large chunk of change that will allow you to do almost anything you wish during your countdown.
Your physical and finacial capabilities and rough timeframe are known, so its time to plan how best to use your resources. First, while physically able, travel. See the plces you dreamed of and had perhaps planned to see upon retirement. For me, that was a cruise of the Mediterrranean, with visits to Greece and Turkey. It was fun and I wish I could have done more, but it was exhausting. I didn’t have any other specific activities that I wished to do, having led a pretty active and excting life, with skydiving, white water rafting , sport fishing, etc. already accomplished.
With the body going its time to really spend the money.(and, of course, minimize the tax bite the best you can).. You ensure your comfort for your remaining days…comfortable furniture, nice landscaping, an oversized air conditioning system, etc. You remodel your home a bit and make alterations to accommodate your condition (e.g., wheelchair ramps). And then you spoil yourself and those you love. You buy art and jewelry and surround yourself with beautiful things. You surprise a friend with tickets to the World Series for her and her husband. You generously lavish gifts on people who made a positive impact on a life you have now had lots of time on which to reflect. You’ve come to appreciate how very precious life is, how quickly time can escape you, and you don’t waste your precious time on trivial matters. And if you are very, very lucky you meet and fall in love with a beautiful, caring and understanding woman who will make every remaining moment of your life, absolutely perfect. Yes, I have ALS. I’m also a very lucky guy. .

flameboi's avatar

I can actually live fifty more years, or five minutes, I just pretend not to know, I live my life like a normal twentysomething, doing the things I love to do :)

augustlan's avatar

WtF: That was beautiful.

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