I have never been able to come to terms with the idea of death. I am not an atheist but also not particularly religious so have confusions over my version of the afterlife.
I recently read Dolly Alderton’s ‘Everything I know about Love’, and though not a major plot-line, a brief thought discussed the amazement of living knowing that one day we will die. It has really resonated with me and I often think of it. We can’t let it take over otherwise we would be miserable and never do anything, crippled by fear that if we leave the house, it will be our turn, but it is remarkable that we get on with our seemingly mundane lives.
Discussing death with children is a whole new ball game and one I struggle with. I feel like a bit of a fraud when discussing Heaven in the sky when I don’t necessarily know if I believe that myself. But how else do you explain that a loved one is gone and can’t be seen again? In their little lives nothing seems particularly final so I can’t imagine how confusing it must feel for them. They can be resilient and certainly are a lot more matter of fact than we are but it’s so hard, especially when you yourself are suffering.
It annoys me that we have to ‘deal’ with grief, like it’s a nuisance or inconvenience. Everyone ‘deals’ with grief in their own way but what if we didn’t have to ‘deal’ with it as such but instead eventually came to terms with our new lives and lived parallel to it, letting it cripple us some days and feeling ok about it the next?
Maybe taking away the pressure of having to ‘deal’ with the grief will have a positive impact. Celebrating someone’s life and the length of it is all very well but it doesn’t make you miss them any less. Sure, the positive aspect of it is bound to help your own outlook on life eventually but in the moment, hearing supposed reassurances on the loved one and what they would have wanted you to feel, doesn’t necessarily help. Yes, you may have been lucky to have them for the years you did but that doesn’t mean you can’t be angry that you didn’t get them for many more years.
So, I am going to really try and live my life in a more positive way. The worries that keep you up at night today, will be so insignificant in 6 months time, no matter how great they seem right now.
Life is fragile and it shouldn’t take a close death to make you realise it but sadly it does. Love your friends and family hard, get rid of anything or anyone that makes you feel negative, i.e. idiots on Instagram with fake lives and be at the ready to listen to a friend grieving, preferably with chocolate and wine. No one ever looks back on their life and regrets having too much fun.