Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Death and Perception

First, an impromptu poem.

You think you're just pulling down a curtain
But you're building a wall
While I'm walking away
And when the curtain is drawn
And the wall may crumble
I'll be gone, gone

Okay, moving on.

Lately, death has been on my mind. No one close to me has passed; not recently, or perhaps ever, but the subject has manifested itself within my mind on several meaningful occasions of late. So, I decided I would blog about something a bit different than usual. (Speaking of which, I am getting VERY mixed results from the most recent poll... which I like, but we'll see what comes of that.)

So, let me start out by stating that I have never had anyone terribly close to me die. The first funeral I attended was just a couple of years ago, for my paternal grandmother. It's not like I never knew her, or didn't love her. I was one of nearly 30 grandchildren, and some of my other cousins were much closer than me and my siblings. I almost felt guilty watching some of them cry at the wake and funeral.

I was honored, as one of the oldest grandsons, to be a pallbearer. It was a sad time, no doubt. I went to go see my grandmother in the hospital before she passed, while my siblings did not. Maybe I felt it was on obligation to my father...

But that brings me back to guilt.

One of the aforementioned "occasions" involved a close friend, also dealing with the coming passing of his grandmother. I felt the need to be there for him, but it's almost as if there was a lack of empathy on my part. I care about my friend, thus wanting to be there for him, but the truth is, I didn't have the right words to say, most likely due to that lack of empathy. Maybe my definition of "empathy" is inaccurate, but bottom line is, I did not have the same kind of relationship with my grandmother that he did (does) with his.

Fortunately, I have been blessed with a perception on the subject of death that has allowed me to share said perception with those grieving. It's a fairly complex theory, but essentially it's rhetoric falls along the lines of most Western religions.

"She'll always be a part of your life, he'll always be in your heart," mumbo-jumbo (I hate to call it that, but for lack of a better term...).

I'll probably be blogging more about this new perception I speak of quite a bit in the future (depending on the outcome of the poll of course, lol), but either way, it allowed me to give my friend some comforting words, at the very least.

Do you realize - that we're floating in space...
Do you realize - that everyone you know someday will die
And instead of saying all of your goodbyes - let them know
You realize that life goes fast
It's hard to make the good things last
You realize the sun doesn't go down
It's just an illusion caused by the world spinning round

It's quite an illusion.


splinky said...

dealing with death is a tricky one.
i tend to make light of the situation and crack jokes. which in turn pisses some people off, but makes me feel a heck of a lot better about it.

i always get the "why dont u cry", "how heartless are u" but in my eyes the person passed knows thats just me being me and isnt angry.

people should just remember that everyones take on death is different. the best thing to do is honor that person with memories..great memories.