Speaking Frankly About Death
coming to Terms with Death
Death, No Alternative
On February 11, 2012 we lost Whitney Houston. Her loss was shocking and felt around the world. This had got me to thinking about writing about death whcih I had been thinking about for some time. Death cannot always be prepared for. Why? because we never know exactly when it will come and how. For those who are somewhat fortunate, failing health or old age will perhaps prepare our loved ones and relatives and friends for eventual death. A person may come to terms better if he has time to think about his death during a severe illness, injury, or old age if he has the ability to think. One thing, however, for sure, death will come. Whether it shall come unexpectantly or not it will come. Now I don't consider myself a Christian so I can't see beyond death. I believe that death is the end and I mean the absolute end. There is no more life after death. I do recognize the Bible as a book intended to bring about good and harmony so therefore I do use it for comfort and to even quote it from time to time. Here is one bible verse that maked sense to me:
"For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not any thing,
neither have they any more a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten."
For the majority of us this holds true. It need not matter what a person feels about his or her legacy for you see thay won't know anyway. Only the living will be left to suffer their loss.There is no real sure way to come to terms with death or the fear of one's own death. As the scripture said we all know we are going to die. I'm not here to bring comfort in knowing this for it does not bring me any comfort to know that my loved ones are going to die but still they will die. Then what am I trying to say? Why am I writing this/? Why? because there is an answer. That answere is as follows. Fear of death is normal and natural, to grieve is showing true love and compassion. So what do we do how do we live knowing that death will rob us of all that we have, take away our people we love, sooth us when it takes away evil, and eventually consume us all?
We celebrate life. That is what we do. If you care about the legacy you leave and it means something to you then you strive to etch it in the minds of people you care about but most of all enjoy life to its fullest with the ones whom you care about and the ones who care about you. Don't be ashamed to say, I love you, thank you, I'm sorry, forgive me because those things will mean notheing written or spoken to a dead person.
Take the time to reasure the ones you love that what you have to say now that they will have to call upon from their memory to find consolation when they need it and to trust that you meant it. Always take pictures and write notes about various events and occassions. If not permitted to take any pictures write notes to yourself, Transcribe things that you said to your very close friends and loved ones and what they said to you. Record, if acceptable, the sounds the vidios as well as stills as I said before. Keep a scrap book. Technology is good for some things so recording spoken words on CD's and movies and pictures on DVD"s is a good way of keeping the things you treasure and hold dear to you.
Coping with the fear of death. I cant tell anyone how to cope with the fear of death. I simply do not know. Here, however is one thing to keep in mind. We think of what we will miss and who we'll miss when we die and also the things we will not get accomplished. The growing up of a child or grandchild, a graduation, or a triumphant accomplishment. We even fill bad when our loved ones don't get to see what we accomplish. The one thing we can rest asured of I do believe is that all the fears we have of our own death exixts as we live. When we die there will be no more fear no regrets, no more anxiety. Regardless of even how badly one is mistreated once they die its all gone so hince why should there be a hell to go to. We act and set guidelines to protect the living and we follow them to the best of our knowledge and ability and that's the way it should be for no one has the right to take away life sinselessly and needlessly.
We cannot and will not live forever. That is simple. Unlike what T. D. Jakes had to say at Whitney's funeral, death will always win. but only the living will be left to know that. Take comfort in the fact that we will all be laid to rest even if our bodies are not in tact, we will meet our final destination and there will be no more pain, pleasure, or anxiety. No death is not our friend but just as it was before we were born it will be as we pass.