When it comes to debilitating fear, few things generate more of it than death, one of them being speaking in public. Like speaking in public, death strips us down to our truth, bares it for all to see and leaves us uncertain of what will happen after the fact. Its inevitability only compounds the fear to the point of making avoiding it as long as we can highly desirable. Having lost someone close and seen its face far too often to count, the matter is never too far from my thoughts, never easy to face, no matter how I grow and mature. Naturally, the ‘I don’t wanna die!’ factor is present in this, but part of it comes from the fear of leaving things important to me forever undone, a fear I dread more than anything I could conceive.
Even the healthiest and most well protected of us can be ended at any moment, leaving our creations and our legacy to those who will come after we depart. Perhaps I’m a fool for think these things at my age, but the thought of passing on without offering my experiences and knowledge to this world is all encompassing, leading me to lead a life of minimal regrets. Much of that is tied to my desire to bring clarity into the lives of others and making sure I communicate well and honestly, and to do that, I must make peace with not only death, but also the chance that I may not accomplish all I set out to before my time comes. As someone more studied than I once said, “When you die, your inbox will still be full”. I’m sure the more this dawns on me, the more I free myself to create things that endure the ages.
It’s true I won’t know what I’ll leave behind until I’m gone, but I would like my funeral to be filled with those I come across and helped bring clarity and understanding. Even if I could only do that for one person during my lifetime, I’d be able to leave this world in peace, knowing that one person was able to see the light enshrouded by darkness. Without this, we are prone to having the fear of death cripple us from leading a full life, a fate worse than death, itself. When I’m drawing into me my final breath, I don’t ever want my final words to be “I blew it”; I want to tell those beside me in my final hours that I gave my life to doing what I loved and did things I would be glad to have them pass on to the next generation. After all, it’s when we can live in peace with things left undone that we free ourselves to do the most our minds and bodies will allow.