Preparing my Funeral # 2 by Misha Lyuve

Jul 8, 2012


We do not see things as they are, we see things as we are. – Talmudic saying

If you haven’t read Preparing my Funeral yet, start with it. The post brought back a mixed bag of responses, like concerned questions about me, cheering !! of happy-funeral seekers, to calling my writing self-indulgent and distasteful. Gosh, it is impossible to have you all agree on something.

How about this: you are dying right now. Each living moment takes us one step closer to death. Those who live in a war zone or experienced a life threatening illness are probably much more present to this. But even if your biggest concern at the moment is the temperature of your iced drink - keep sipping, but it doesn’t change the fact.

I believe that if you aspire to be fully engaged in your life journey, you cannot ignore its fundamentals – your own mortality. So thinking, writing, discussing, painting, singing about death is not just fine, but necessary. Your views, judgements, fears, beliefs and not-beliefs about death – whether expressed in open, to yourself in the shower or hidden in the dark corners of your unconsciousness – shape the way you participate in life. However awkward or scary it might seem, I say bring them out to the open and set judgements aside.

For example, people ask me why I do so many things. Simple. Here is a situation that, so to speak, scares me to death: I am lying on my deathbed with an idea that I wanted to do something and I didn’t try it. Even writing this sentence makes my neck sweat and my eyeballs dry up. No! No! No! I’d rather make a fool of myself. I’d rather fail in everything I tried and die with a background of subtle whispers: “he was such a loser.”

Apart from this, what’s scares me about dying: medical procedures, pain and helpless states that are often associated with it. I say:

If you’re putting me to rest

Make it easy, smooth and fast

Now it’s your turn. What is your story?

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  1. ana luisa

    baby, we die the minute we are conceived, right? scientifically speaking….whatever, the minute life begins it moves towards and through its natural process — life, a beginning, and end, the big fat middle is what we live….We are confronted with death: earthquakes, guerillas, coup-d’etats, bullets flying over your head while lying belly-down on the floor at 14, the CIA after your socialist justice-for-all but, your son having ‘detresse respiratoire’ at 1 second after birth, your mother/mother-in-law’s agressive cancer, your husband’s concussion (dangerously flirting with coma) after a silly hockey accident, cars not stopping for you when your on the pedestrian cross-walk — hey, death is all around us, BUT only because we are ALIVE, so we should be kicking!!!!! I NEVER think about death, but I question my life, more every day because I have, painfully, realized that I haven’t been LIVING fully. But I if I must enter this conversation with you, my darling, then I say that I LIVE, and when I DIE, I want everybody to wear different colors (please organize so that ALL the colors of the rainbow are worn), music must be sung AND danced, and I am working on living to the fullest so that the epitaph written will read something ‘awesome”….ya see, I’m still not even close to living life so that “She was awesome, full of life, loved cooking, did yoga, loved everybody-everything-anytime-everywhere….” so I got lots of years/months/weeks/days/hours/minutes/seconds to use. Love ya Mishuleto

  2. Misha T

    Yes, it’s true that we are all in the process of dying, but I prefer “living my life”, rather than “dying my life” and I do think it makes a difference how you think about it. And we should live, explore, experience, etc to the fullest – that’s the best way to prepare for death.

  3. Inna

    Carpe diem, oh ye faithful! Who knows what tomorrow will bring? I’d rather die young and kicking than old and decrepit.

  4. Heulwen Renshaw

    Going by Malvina’s account, I should be dead long ago. But are people rushing to their death prematurely? I’m going by the account that many have found to be true, that you become what you wish for, in other words the more you think about it the brain will accept it as the norm, and eventually we become ill. Perhaps I’m so determined to ‘live’ and enjoy each day, or at least try to, that I’m purposely avoiding even the thought of it. Admittedly, this has now made me think, and the more I think about it…the less I want to. I may be cheating myself of reality, In not being true or honest with myself. Now this could leave me depressed and I could just withdraw from all that I find dear to my heart, and believe in. I suppose it’s all boils down to how strong we really are. I know that when many people realize they are dying, they become more vibrant and alive and want to do things they never thought of doing before. I suppose the time has come to do some things that I’ve been thinking of doing before the Big day, or at least ‘prepare’ for it, (costly as it is!). Meanwhile I shan’t spend too much time wishing for it.