Death is the great mystery that binds all living things. It provokes thoughts, behaviors, and a number of emotions that can produce some pretty powerful reactions within the human journey. One of the most curious behaviors is the concept that we somehow think that we can manage death. This is something that I personally find very humorous because I happen to fall into this category. Auto-Obituaries, Auto- Epitaphs, Last Will and Testaments, Living Wills are all concepts that perpetuate the notion that we can somehow manage death.
Okay I know some of you are cringing out there, this does have a morbid ring to it, but if you think about it’s pretty humorous. How we individually approach death whether it’s our own, or someone else’s, your reactions say a great deal about your personality type. You know that if Facebook threw up a “What’s Your Death Personality Quiz ” most of us would probably take it, and just not post the results.
It occurred to me that whenever I need to accomplish something challenging in life I rely upon what g2, and I refer to as “The Magical Vagina (TM).” My explanation for my extra inner strength to help me face the seemingly impossible demands life bestows upon us. I have the kind of personality that finds that organizing, and managing appeases my natural inclination to become anxiety ridden over things that exist outside of my comfort zones. Apparently in my little world, death falls into that category. Maude says it’s because I hang out a lot with what she refers to (much to my great protest!) as “The Walking, Wheeling Dead.” I prefer the term “my nursing home peeps.” I also reminded her that she is the reason I started thinking about the whole “Auto-Obituary”/ “Auto-Epitaph” concept in the first place.
Maude also pointed out that the illusion of being in control goes a long way in removing the fear factor of facing our immortality. She’s crotchety, but you can’t deny she also hit the nail on the head. Having the last word in your own obituary, or on your own headstone is not managing death. It is however in my humble opinion a way of making sure the world gets a more accurate sense of who we were. So of course I had to ask Maude what she wanted her Auto-Epitaph to say. She smiled at me with her much too self-satisfied grin, and replied ” Maude was here, and the rest is none of your damn business.” 😉