I went around and around about whether or not to actually publish this post, because it’s on such a touchy subject for so many of us. However, every day for the last several weeks, I’ve been approached – in some form or fashion – by someone experiencing this (either directly or indirectly). And we’re all going to experience it someday…
Death. Dying. Passing away. Transitioning. Croaking.
There. I said it. Whatever you call it, though, we seem to have this intense fear of the inevitable day when we transition out of our physical bodies and into… Well, there’s the rub, folks. Where do we go? I think that’s probably what lies at the seat of all of those fears… it’s not really about death, is it? It’s about the unknown.
We don’t like the unknown. It’s scary. And we prefer safety over fear any day. But what if death was as far from scary as it could possibly be. What if death was an exquisite rejoining with the “all-that-isness” of “all-that-is”… Source Energy, God, The Universe. We all call it something different, but I believe it’s all the same thing. Here’s why…
I’ve experienced a whole lot of death in my life… obviously not my own (sorry, couldn’t resist). And each death brought with it a rekindling of this deep knowing inside me that we are all connected in a much more real way than I could have been aware of without the experience of losing someone close to me.
When I was in my early twenties, my father – who prior to that time had never been sick a day in his life – got sick. We all thought he just had a cold or allergies or something relatively benign. By the time he finally made it to the doctor, his body had pretty much been overwhelmed by cancer.
Now, I need to go back a bit and tell you that my father was really my idol. He was brilliant (a PhD in neurochemistry and master of pretty much everything he ever focused on, which was a lot of stuff), funny, handsome, healthy and hard-working. He also had quite a bit of trouble connecting with people… I guess all that science and math stuff holds true for at least that one guy. Anyway, he was just a downright likable person (when he wanted to be), but he had his flaws.
When he died, it was devastating to all of us in my family. I spent the next several years alternating between depression and anger… I couldn’t quite come to grips with the fact that my father was gone. That he wouldn’t see me graduate from college (quite a saga, but a story for another time), wouldn’t be there to walk me down the aisle on my wedding day, would never meet my children, etc, etc, etc. You know… all the stuff you want your dad around for.
One day, though, I noticed that I could feel him. And then, I noticed that I could hear what his responses would have been (or at least, what I think they would have been) in certain situations. And, on top of that, it was all the feel-good, warm & fuzzy, funny, likable parts of him that I was feeling. All of his walls, his resistance, his difficulty with connecting was gone. What remained was what I affectionately refer to as “Dad++”… I have never told anyone that last part. It seemed like such an odd thing to call him, but it makes sense to me. Later in his life, he got really into computer programming and taught himself C++… I guess that’s where this new name for him originated.
I can’t express in words that JOY I felt when I finally allowed myself to notice that I had a better relationship with my father after his passing than while he was alive! And that he would indeed be here with me through all of my life’s big milestones. And even better… the Dad++ who was here with me was SO easy to connect with and to be close to!
At the beginning of this post, I mentioned that there had been a number of deaths that I’ve been aware of around me: friends and acquaintances losing fathers, grandparents, pets. And, while I very clearly remember that sense of pain and sorrow at no longer having the physical manifestation of these people and animals around us, I can’t help but feel the tiniest, slightest bit happy for them… because now I know – at the core of my being – that they have not “lost” anyone… and that they will have the opportunity to know an even more meaningful, even more intimate connection after life than during.
Feel free to share your comments about this post and this subject in general in the comments below. I’d love to hear your thoughts.