I have what might be an abnormally conscious fear of death.

It’s sort of hard for me to describe.  There is more than one facet to it.

First of all, I simply do not want to die, and I fear dying young.  I don’t want to abandon my children before they are old enough to know I loved them with all my being, and before they are mature enough to not be psychologically scarred by my absence.  I love life, I love being alive, and I don’t want it to end any time soon.

Then, there’s the fear of dying itself.  I am a secular humanist so I don’t believe in heaven or hell, or limbo, or reincarnation, or any other sort of existence beyond life as we know it here.  I believe that life just ends, that consciousness just ends, and that’s it.  Part of me really wishes I didn’t; if I could believe that when I died, I’d be reunited with my mother and grandparents and all my other loved ones, it would be so much more comforting.  I wish I could find something about death that I could look forward to.  I suppose it is fortunate that I have no reason to believe that death would be better than the life I’m living now.  Still, I dwell on it occasionally, and quite honestly, it terrifies me.  What will it feel like, to slip out of consciousness like that, never to return?  Will I know it’s happening?  Am I going to spend the last few moments of my life scared out of my mind because my greatest fear is happening to me?

I got wrapped up in all those thoughts last night, as I laid with Lane trying to get her to fall asleep.  Oh man, it is not a good or comforting thing to be so aware of one’s own mortality sometimes.


6 responses to “Overcome

  1. Thinking about what happens after we die is very scary. When I was sedated after having my son I had a wild hallucination that I had died and that after death your soul goes into a “pod”, one of millions in rows and that you stay there forever, in nothingness. I remember begging (no one around, really, just begging) that my pod be next to Husband’s. It really, really shook me.

    Being an older parent this is on my mind quite a bit. That’s one of the main reasons I blog. I want Son to get a feel for who I am through my writing. I pray that I am lucky enough to see him into adulthood.

    I pray a lot.

  2. It’s not the main reason I blog – somehow I have to be able to bitch about my mother-in-law sending me balloons without expecting my husband to put up with all of it – but it’s a big reason why I do. To put it all down. I have a paper-and-pen journal, for each child, too, which I don’t update nearly as often as I want to, but it’s there and it’s better than nothing.

    I don’t pray. I don’t know how, nor would I believe that it made a difference if I got a lesson.

    I just try and focus on the here-and-now and leave the big picture worries alongside the sadness about the cyclone victims and victims of poverty and so on…

  3. I too think about these things and they often keep me up at night…I though, do believe in heaven, but often question it’s existence. I would like to recommend a book, 90 Minutes in Heaven by Don Piper. Really good, and even if you don’t believe, you will be amazed by his recovery journey.

  4. I fear dying because I fear leaving my kids motherless. I don’t worry so much about what happens afterwards, but I definitely can make myself sick with worry that I’m going to die.

    I hate that.

    I definitely feel for you.

  5. I highly recommend the book Final Gifts. Its a collection of stories from Hospice Volunteers and nurses sharing “nearing death experiences”. I wish I would have read it before my Dad died. I would have dealt with my own feeling and HIS much better.

  6. stumbled across your blog and this post really put into words the thoughts that i have never verbalized. those thoughts, that at times, run circles in my brain and keep me up at night.

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