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death and the dying

i've been struggling to write this post because i wasn't sure i could sufficiently articulate the heaviness of my thoughts. nor was i sure i was ready for people to know the depths of the darkness that has been occupying my mind for months now. they say we never share 80% of the thoughts that consume us, so i guess this is my attempt at doing just that.

despite having written on this topic before, i have never done so with as much emotion as i am currently experiencing. when i was in Tasmania in the new year, i found myself obsessing over death. as we drove around the beautiful countryside of Tassie, my mind was swallowed by the heaviness of death. i never really allow myself to 'go there' - to really think about what happens after we die, because doing so is enough to make me sick to my stomach. i am, and always have been, petrified of death. i feel paralysed by the finality of it. the fact that we have no idea what happens, the fact that there might not be 'anything else' literally scares the shit out of me. and i don't know how to shake these feelings.

for most of our lives, we're ignorant to the inevitability of not just our own demise, but the demise of others. they say ignorance is bliss, and perhaps it is. because i can guarantee the thoughts and feelings that have been dominating my heart and mind for the past six weeks have been nothing less than debilitating.

i have recently had family and friends who have lost their Mum/Mom and it has made me think about my own parents. about how fortunate i am to still have them around, but also how terrified i am to live any part of my life without them. to lose my Dad, the man who i literally go to for everything - for every question, for every pain, for every support. and to lose my Mum, the light not just in my life, but in so many others' too. the person who i rely on in every way that you rely on a Mum - i genuinely cannot, nor do i want to, imagine a life without either of them.

but that's inevitable. because death is inevitable. and i cannot wrap my head around how nonchalant we are about something so significant, something so final. how does this fear not cripple anyone else?

we are so detached in society around the topic of death - we minimise people's lives to a headline in the paper, "man shot by dog". we deal with the dying as "it's a part of life" - but are people truly aware of what happens when someone dies? are they not overwhelmed by the reality of never seeing nor speaking to that individual again? and are people not afraid of this for their own life?

this topic occupies so much of my mind that i became a vegetarian over a year ago purely because i cannot bear the thought of an animal dying, let alone to eat something that has died. the thought that that animal is no longer, that its family will never interact with it again, is honestly both heartbreaking and sickening because it again makes me think about my life and the lives of those closest to me.

they say the only way to truly live is to be able to accept our own mortality. and i fear that if i can never get a handle on my own mortality, if i can't learn to accept the inevitability of everyone, i'll never truly be able to live. all i know is that right now, i'm a fucking mess thinking about all of this.

so, what occupies your mind?

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