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A little on death

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I have a family member in the hospital. She’s been there a little over a week, I think. We’ve gotten to the point that she is refusing treatment, which means that sooner rather than later she’s going to pass. Her body is poisoning itself, and her blood numbers are all out of whack. She’s basically delirious, at this point, and no one is sure if she really understands what refusing treatment means. But at the end of the day, this isn’t like a simple IV that they can administer and be done. This would be an on-going, long, intense treatment that would last the rest of her life. You can’t tie someone down and force them to do things against their will, even if they don’t really know what they’re doing.

Mike and I were talking about the situation last night. He said this: that’s the thing with really religious people. They’re not afraid to die because they believe that they’re going to a better place and be reunited with their loved ones. I can understand not wanting to live a certain way and going into it with full knowledge of what you’re doing. But I don’t think that’s unique to religious people; there’s a lot of atheists that feel the same way. And I think that there are a lot of religious people that are terrified to die.

I don’t believe in heaven or hell. I believe that death is just final. That’s it. And I’m totally okay with it. Think of it – before you were born, millions of people lived their lives, billions of things happened. The world turned on. And then you were born, and eventually gained a consciousness which expanded over the years. Sometimes history feels like a story. It’s hard to wrap your head aroudn things like the Mongol rule, the Pyramids being built, the Age of Enlightenment, the Tudors, the Renaissance, WWI, etc. as events that actually happened, and that people that experienced these things have been dead for hundreds of years. Sometimes it’s just hard to conceive.

In my experience, most people that have suffered from depression have contemplated death at least a few times. It’s still seems like an abstract concept so much of the time, and if they’re anything like me, they’ve ruminated on it extensively. You think about all of the things that you’re going to miss if you die – everything from family things, to books that you’ve been waiting on the sequel for for years, movies coming out, events with friends, the births of children, flying cars, etc.

There’s a song by All Time Low about death and suicide. If you listen to the music, it’s pretty upbeat, but when you dive down into the lyrics, you get gems like this:

Hold on tight,
This ride is a wild one,
Make no mistake,
The day will come when you can’t cover up what you’ve done,
Now don’t lose your fight, kid,
It only takes a little push to pull on through,
With so much left to do,
You’ll be missing out, and we’ll be missing you.

Missing You – All Time Low

Despite the musicality, the song is about suicide and how if you lose your fight there will be people that miss the hell out of you.

And if my aunt goes, we’ll miss the hell out of her too.

Currently listening to: Glitter and Crimson – All Time Low

One thought on “A little on death

  1. I’m another bipolar atheist who has spent too much time thinking about death … I don’t advocate suicide, but I think there are times when a person should be able to choose to end their life on their terms. My wife’s uncle is choosing to stop treatment after several unsuccessful surgeries – fully aware of the consequences – and the rest of the family is not taking it well. Somehow I was brought into the conversation, and I said “maybe I’m not the right person to ask, but …”

    Liked by 1 person

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