You might think as someone who’s training to be an End of Life Care Doula, I’d be completely comfortable with all things Death related.
I have spent time in a cardboard coffin after all and Death is my number one focus in life, behind reading and food. I must be so chill. I must be so brave and strong. I must not fear anything to do with Death at all!
Ha ha ha!
Yeah … NO.
Just last night, I woke in an absolute panic, chest pounding, mind racing because … I don’t have money set aside to pay for my funeral.
Once I calmed down, I had a good laugh at myself. I can immerse myself in Death but I can’t escape all the complicated emotions that go along with it. I have dreams like this with great regularity. The other night it was men in hooded black robes trying to hack their way into my house with farming tools and the night before that I was trying on some really fashionable shrouds.
I find it worse now actually. The further I delve into my practice, the more things come up for me. I’m grateful because I’d much rather work this stuff out now, than in a frenzied panic on my death bed.
(If I get a death bed. )
Some days, I even declare a “death free” day, as much as I can control that of course, because it all gets to be too much and I need to take a soothing break.
Most days, I’m Ok. I can think about it and read about it and learn about it and while I realize the gravity of it all, I am able to live a normal life, just like everyone else. But some days … some days I am ridden with anxiety and disbelief.
It happens to the “others”.
It’s going to happen to me too!
What is up with that?
I want to be open because I want other people to know that their feelings of fear et al, are completely normal and can be worked through. I might wake up in a panic sometimes, or cringe when I imagine the world without me but thinking about death and working through those feelings are valuable to me too. It’s a trade off for sure, but I’ve only grown because of it.
Death clarifies life.
It motivates me. If I realize I only have a finite period of time left to do the things I want to do, I’m going to do them! That’s why I went to Peru, even though I was scared to travel alone. That’s why, I went to Tanzania rather than buy myself a car. That’s why I stopped waiting for a perfect time to educate myself . I only have so many years yet. And none of them are guaranteed to be good or comfortable. None of them are guaranteed at all.
It puts all things into perspective. I’m not going to fight with people over stupid sh*t. The energy output is not worth my precious time.
I’d rather spend my time loving rather than hating, and just ignore the nonsense as best as I can. Hell, I even ignore the nasty weather. I hate it, that’s for sure but I’ve found my life is better if I just keep it in the background. Instead I focus on how good hot tea is or how nice fuzzy socks are. ( This is huge for a natural complainer like me. )
Death helps us live in the now, intentionally. I became the captain of my own ship. I choose. I decide. When you live intentionally you take responsibility for everything in your life and that my friends is freedom. Freedom is my jam.
When I live in the now, I’m really living my life, not just coasting through it wondering where the days ( months, years ) went.
So, facing death, even though I am as afraid as anyone can have its benefits.
These are just a few of the things that I think about. If you start using death as your advisor you’ll have your own things too.
It’s all OK. You can be scared AND still think about/ plan for/ talk about Death.
You wont die. Well you will, just not from that. 🙂 ❤
Talk to me about death. Are you fearful? Curious? Indifferent?
Love, & Long Healthy Life & Squishy Hugs!