Excerpt from May 2020 give glow newsletter
I was looking at my toenail this morning. Half of it covered by shiny nail polish; half without. New cells has replaced the old where the nail polish used to be. It reminded me of how my body is constantly evolving. One cell replacing another. Birth and death is the circle of life.
We are all sheltering in place because we want to avoid unnecessary deaths. For so many of us, we don’t want other people to die, and we ourselves are afraid of dying.
My question is: How are we living?
Recently, someone quoted a saying that goes something like:
“the way you die is the way you live.”
This quote stroke a cord. I want to believe that I live my life quite fully, and as a result, I am not afraid to die. I had a spiritual experience four years ago where my life flashed before my eyes. I saw how much I have already experienced in my life and felt gratitude. I had lived a good life; I am not afraid to die.
However, when I ask myself: What is the deepest longing that remains?
I do have a longing that remains. I want to experience even more magic of this world. To be in awe of its wondrous design. To have more out of body, totally unexpected, truths be revealed. I want to melt into the rhythm of the wind and dance with the leaves. To hear the songs of the birds and understand what they are celebrating. I want to more deeply step into my purpose and channel the divine’s wishes.
A friend of mine who is a hospice nurse recently shared with me that a clarity arrives when the person is days or weeks from death.
I asked him, “What is the clarity about? Is it about the meaning of life? Or who am I?”
He answered, “The common theme seems to be – did I give enough of my life to authentic service?”
People who gave enough are ready for death; and those who didn’t, feel regret and unprepared to leave this world.
Many of us are using this time in isolation to re-examine the way we live. I hear people asking themselves:
What goals no longer feel important? What can I let go and do less?
Am I creating enough space in my life to enjoy being?
What is my unique role in midwifing the new world want to see – a healthier and just society and planet for all?
I still have deep longing; I’m not ready to die. There are more steps to take on my journey and days for my soul to reveal itself. I am not in control of when death comes, but I am in control of how I choose to live.
Fully experiencing every moment and embracing all the ups and the downs is my only responsibility in life. Use death as an ally to truly live.
Here is a short prose-reflection I wrote titled Lessons before Death.