Like each and every one of us I have watched many beginnings and many endings. I have been cheated the chance to say goodbye, and I have harbored confusion on my feelings towards the thought of finality.
Something about life seems so grand, that we forget there is a time limit on it. It is not this limitless and boundless effort put forward as a gift. It is indeed a gift with a message.
It tries to tell each and every one of us one important thing….” I will not last forever, none of this will…..treat me with respect, love and lightness….for one day I will be gone swiftly, and you will not have the chance to say goodbye.”
As a little girl….death became an accessory I carried with me daily. I watched my stepfather die, my uncle, my grandfather, my grandmother and then my first love. The first death was a shock. I had just turned 10, and I did not really understand it. I thought maybe my dad was on some long vacation, and one day he would come back to me. Life changed a lot with his death. Everything changed actually. I think both my step sister and I will never understand why we never got to say goodbye. And then as time went on, and more loved ones fell away……I started to see things for their truth. I knew by the first time my first love died, that I would never get a chance to say goodbye to him. It was painful, but I was aware enough to understand death by then, and I was able to accept it…with time.
I think as a child the worst thing that can be done to us, is that our parents…the adults, try to shelter us from the pain. They keep what they know is coming from us for as long as possible. Then when death occurs….it’s a shock to us. We do not get the chance to say goodbye, or even understand what goodbye in death truly is.
We are given distractions to keep us from feeling, and the last thing anyone wants to do is talk about death, and what it truly means. So from an early age it becomes this magical force, a mystery…that steals our loved ones from us. It is not a healthy way to be witness to death, it is not a healthy way to digest the concept of death, and it most definitely is not a healthy way to perpetuate the conception of it, in our future generations.
As an adult I became numb to it. I did not talk about it, I did not write about it, and I did my best to not think about it. Because in my mind, if I did these things I gave it power. I thought I could manifest it simply by giving it recognition. I thought back to who I had lost before, and the thought always brought me to my knees. I constantly thought about who I’d lost, and became so fearful of who I would lose next. I watched many friends, and family fall away from me to that magic. And each and every time I became more and more aware that I needed to find a different way to deal with the idea of death.
Death is the only constant in this life. And it alone gives life beauty. Without it, what would life be? One long non adaptive string of moments. With death we give love power, we give life power, be give greatness, and depth power.
We create lives that we can live with, so that in death we find peace with our finality. Without the constant of death, there would be nothing to live for. We are given a small amount of moments amongst the great abyss of all that has existed, and all that will come to exist after us.
But in this moment, we are given…. choice. And that is greatness. We are given the choice to live a life of greatness. We are given the chance to push boundaries, to create deep experiences, to see the world, to take risks, to put ourselves in danger, to create stories, to fall so deeply in love with all aspects of our story that we fall mad for the world.
And that is what I learned about death. I do not see death as a dark mystery anymore, I see it as an opportunity to push forth. Each and every day, moments are slipping by. That is not something to be sad about, that is not something to mourn. That is fuel to light the fire within. Time is precious.
“The trouble is you think you have time.”
I still scroll through the faces of the loved ones that have passed by me in the night. I think about their smiles, their lives, and their stories. I think of how precious they were to me, and the moments we had together. I miss them. I always will.
Then I think that soon enough I will be the one missed among my friends. But my message to them I leave here.
‘I have lived a life of greatness, I went out into the world and found the adventures that I read about in the children’s books. I ran fast, I jumped high, I fell hard, and I loved with all my heart. I experienced the mysteries of the world, and I let the world experience me. I never regretted a moment. Life was hard at times, but only hard enough to teach me the lessons that I couldn’t learn on my own. So do not mourn me when I leave one day, or kid yourself that you didn’t get a chance to say goodbye the right way. Do not feel that life cheated me too early, I promise you I got more out of life than you will ever know. I lived at least twenty one lives in my short time. I will miss you all. Promise me that you will not find pain and hatred in this occurrence, but instead you will do all that you ever wanted to do, and that you will use fear as a catalyst to create greatness. I love you so very much. Goodbye.’
So now is the time to find beauty in all the fallen. And remember that life is short. Do nothing with hesitation, find strength in fear and push forward. Create a the life of greatness that you always wanted.
Written for all that we have lost along the way, but who are never truly lost. Time is a relative element of life, in thought and memory…..we never truly lose one another.