Having started on that happy note, let me say “death sucks” and “fear of death is suckiest” or would that be the more suckier? (feet tapping on floor, impatient…, chewing on virtual pencil, scribbling on a virtual reporter’s pad). Yup. (flipping thru prayer book and watching “Life of Brian”…, tapping). Not my death, mind you. All of it. But as I recall, birthing wasn’t a trip to Jamaica either. So, you are probably wondering where am I rambling off to … (clicking eraser on teeth …)No one doubts that I am a devout Christian, even Catholic. Have a medallion on my wall that says it’s true. But anyone who knows me knows I am incorrigible, have an ‘odd’ sense of humour, and – at times – irreverent of, hmmmm, politics, religion, human kind and human unkind. Well, if you know me, then I really don’t have to spell it out. I mean anyone who laughs at the ole “pull my finger” joke, or creates Flair! buttons that say “I still laugh when the ketchup farts!!” doesn’t need much introduction, eh?
So why should my opinion about something so personal, that is either a time to embrace religion and your god, or live it up fast, cuz maybe there isn’t anything else after this mediocre life you’ve lived, matter?
WHAT?! I make one statement, saying “mediocre”, link it to your life, and now you feel upset??!! Isn’t that what we so often say to one another? You mean, yes, you didn’t get that skooter for Christmas, or Calvin Kleins; or you gave away your youth for a husband and children, not to mention your figure, and yes – your husband left you and who would want a washed-out, used up old 30, 40, 50, 60 yr old woman? Or worse. You are stuck with a middle-aged, balding pot-belly hubby and you knew you should have run away with the hair dresser who was so sensitive.
And you men, there you are with this everyday job, never got to learn to fly, lost your struggle to maintain that 6 pack that you had at 21, to one of Bud Lite. Your best years never really happened. Maybe served a time in the service, or married your 2nd choice, or just glad you found anyone at all. Worked day and night, so that you could have time later. The American Dream.
Or maybe your faith has always kept you strong, like a compass, and all turns in the road eventually lined up. And now there’s no beacon, no path, no light at the end of the tunnel. Hell, there’s no tunnel!
Dying sucks because if we are reminded of that EVERYONE is dying, we’d jump out of our skins! In your teens and young adult life, you just laugh out loud at that thought, as you hop on the back of the motorcycle leaving your helmet somewhere else. From then on you just ignore it. Today’s 50 is yesterday’s 30, isn’t it?
Dying sucks because we have to not only justify a mediocre life to ourselves, but actually turn around and come to love it. Love it all. Love it to death.
Dying sucks because so many of us have so many things we wanted or meant to do, were do-able, but life kept us busy. I’m faced with never getting my recipes in order, and bind into a book for my kids. Or make that baby sweater set for each great-grandchild that hasn’t been born yet. Or gather all the loose scraps of envelopes and put them into Outlook as actual addresses. To create the Mother of all Christmas letters to everyone I know, on time, making up for all the years they became Valentine, then Easter greetings, then … nothing.
Dying sucks because I have to wear clean underwear all the time, occasionally bathe & change clothes, keep the house ‘on call’ so that everything I own can either be put in a garbage bag or stuffed in the oven, dishwasher, washer or dryer. Having said that, don’t you DARE look in those places at the post-funeral luncheon.
You know, I do know what is the suckiest? Living, preoccupied with the suckiness of dying. I betcha dying – the real thing – will be a relief, actually. Finally, the messy house, bed head, piles of laundry, unopened bills, the many to-do lists scattered about, the Sunday box of envelopes … they just won’t matter a bit. Maybe my last words to my family will be “Pull my finger.”
You there Papa? It’s me, Vicki
I dedicate this song to all those I pray for, to be taken in the manner intended: love, hope, beating the odds, checking off everything on that Bucket List and remembering to laugh. Out loud.