All jokes aside, I wonder how many of us have told those closest to us what we think and how we feel about leaving this earth. There is an inevitableness about it, yet we avoid it like a Kardashian avoids common sense. Isn't this where religion is supposed to fit in? Oh well, that's a discussion better left to a future posting.
There are those of us terrified that the day will come sooner than expected. We haven't done the things we want to do yet, we haven't traveled to the exotic locations, we haven't seen all we want to see. The thought of the unknown haunts some folks, despite what the Bible stories say. Is it like a switch and snap - fade to black? Is it a new beginning or burning in hell? No one knows for sure. We sure aren't going to talk to our loved ones about this fear.
Life is a journey that constantly changes the destination. Early in childhood, getting ice cream or avoiding a bath seemed like a huge deal. We didn't look much beyond the age of our parents and even THEY seem old. We couldn't imagine living beyond our 40's or 50's.... yet most of us do. During this journey, our goals change, dreams get shaped by our realities, and those things we just KNEW were the most important things in the world at 20, become a bit of a joke by 50. Our bucket lists change as well. I'm convinced that some folks think that if they keep doing youngish things, they won't be considered OLD. The polls are in and despite what we may think, kids are going to think we are old waaaaay before our time anyway! If that matters....
I know that most of us have clear evidence of our aging. Eyesight, hearing, or aches and pains we never thought would catch up to us, have, and are not going anywhere any time soon. That is offset (in our favor!) by the experience of life. We are smarter than we were when we were younger and better human beings because we learned about living. We learned that life is not fair, but it can still be a hoot to get through a day. We learned that growing up is a lifetime thing, not one based on teenage years. We learned that 4 out of 5 dentists surveyed recommend sugarless gum for their patients who chew gum.
The main thing I hope we learn is that we shouldn't be afraid of the so-called end. It really isn't an end at all, but a beginning of a new adventure. Am I ready to leave this blue dot in space? I don't want anyone thinking that, if I don't wake up tomorrow, (or the day after, or next Tuesday) that I will feel cheated in any way. Life has been far too good, considering how often I have tried to sabotage it. My dreams have been exceeded many times over and I feel lucky to have done what I've done, learned what I've learned, and hung out with the many great spirits in my life.
Do I want a fancy marker with my name and a clever phrase on it, for people I don't know, to not see? Nope. I don't want to take up the space. In my mind, once you go a generation, maybe two, there isn't anyone around to talk to you at your gravesite, so why clutter up the ground? I don't say this to try and demean anyone who wants to be buried by that apple tree. That's good for them. I would rather just fade away and let those I crossed paths with move on.
I'm not feeling bad if few will know or care that I'm no longer around. I feel bad for those that feel they are worthless because no one in the world cares about THEM.
If you care.... share. Tell someone they matter. Tell someone you notice and appreciate them. Tell them you want to know more about what's going on in their life.