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In the Midst of Life We Are in Death

Updated on October 14, 2018
ethel smith profile image

Now retired Eileen looks back occasionally on her working life. She is enjoying retirement and embracing older age with a smile.

Those Famous Words


Death Comes Calling

Media vita in morte sumus — in the midst of life we are in death.

This age old saying is worth remembering as death often comes knocking when we least expect it.

This week my oldest sister-in-law unexpectedly died aged 80.

You may say, well 80 is a good age, and yes, it is. but like many things in this life age is relative.

When I was 20-years-old 50 sounded ancient. Now I am in my late sixties 80 does not sound so old.

Her death was unexpected and relatively quick. A life snuffed out in the blink of an eye, though surely that is how we would all chose to leave this world?

There are so many long, lingering and horrible ways we may die, a quick, fairly untroubled passing has to be the best way? That of course depends on many things including your age and if you have unfinished business.

As my in-law was passing her two adult children were on a plane flying back to the U.K. but they arrived too late.

Her grandchildren and some family members however were with her.

She was unconscious but perhaps she felt our presence?


Recriminations seem common place in bereavement.

Loved ones so often beat themselves up for not visiting enough, not being there as the end of life draws near and so much more. Worse still some people have not spoken for years after some silly argument; in some cases an argument none of those involved even really remember.

It should be a lesson to us all and we should act accordingly.

However once the death is fading into memory most people carry on as before.

Sadly even the closest loved one may manage to blame themselves in some way and they will need to be reassured.

Make Changes Before It Is Too Late

If your family has a rift resolve the issues now.

If there is a loved one you have been meaning to visit or get in contact with do it now.

Never put off till tomorrow what you can do today, as after all tomorrow may never come for you! There are so many pertinent sayings we should heed.

In the 21st Century friends and family are scattered around the world but modern technology means it is easy to keep in touch.

The Last Goodbye

So now we wait.

Funerals are a necessity though never easy. Family and friends will gather to say that last goodbye. Will there be any arguments? Sadly there may be.

However death is a fact of life.

None of us like to dwell on death and funerals but perhaps we should all be prepared.

In the midst of life we are in death - life and death are intertwined.

Life, and time, is precious, use both wisely.

© 2018 Ethel Smith


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