Saturday, April 19, 2014

No One Here Gets Out Alive

(Image by Tim Parkinson via Flickr)

I woke up this morning thinking about suicide. Physician-assisted suicide, to be precise. I read this week that Maryland is close to passing a physician-assisted suicide law, which I am all for.

I know it is weird to write about, especially after this whole week of rah-rah, you can do it, self help-y blogs, but here in the House of Pain, things move pretty quickly. Grief is bi-polar.

I was with my father when he died. He looked like he was in pain in his last moments, struggling, literally holding on, clutching his fists by his chin, and then he let go and was utterly gone. Like his body was a shell. It was a simultaneous thing; last breath, empty shell.

I wonder a lot about death. Always have. I’d like to say I have some kind of belief system about it, but I don’t. Best case scenario, your loved one is hovering around you, and every now and then they come in dreams and talk to you, which is sweet but also filled with sorrow for me. Dane does that, and he apparently pops up in other people’s dreams, too. I don’t believe in heaven because I don’t subscribe to any organized religious belief, and the practical side of me knows that dead people are still out there in the form of energy, which I also happen to like very much. Just as we are drinking dinosaur pee, we are inhaling the energy of dead people, or feeling their warmth on our face.

Nobody talks about death much. Best to be practical in most cases. I think a lot about dying alone, and don’t we all die alone, even surrounded by loved ones, but I think about it in terms of being alone, with no one. Dane was supposed to be holding my hand. I don’t want to leave my shell empty in an empty room. Is that selfish? If that happens, I’d rather do it like a cat does it, creep off into the woods when I feel unwell and just disappear. That tends to prompt investigations and search parties and worry, though.

So there we have it. Musings on a Friday morning. Waking up, thinking about death. Looking over at Dane’s ashes as the puppy nuzzles his warm nose under my hand. Birds chirping outside. The world is filled with strange juxtaposition.

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