Meditating on Death

So, just to get this out of the way, I’m not planning on dying anytime soon.  Tomorrow though, I will be thinking about dying a little bit, and how to practice the very act of letting go during Noell Clark’s workshop tomorrow, Yoga and the Five Recollections: Practicing Impermanence.  I’ve talked about Noell previously, as she is my special first yoga teaching teacher, and not only is she an amazing teacher in both lecture and practice, she’s also a fabulous person.  So, if you would like to contemplate impermanence with me, evidently there are still a couple of spots left for tomorrow.

This all brings to mind an odd time in my past.  I say odd, but it was actually very cool.  For unknown reasons, before I had my children, I went through a period of about 6 months where I thought of the possibility of my death regularly.  I’d just be walking along, or working, or cooking in my kitchen and think to myself, I could drop dead right now.  And you know what?  It’s still true.  I really could.  I have reached the age where people that I hung out with as a teen have started dying.  I’m of an age where it would be a tough break, but not a total surprise.  Anyhow, during that stage of my life, I felt liberated.  There was something positively tasty about thinking that this could be it…and it wasn’t.  I remember sharing this thought with some of my older friends who were in their 80’s at the time, and they laughed.  They said that when you are as close as they are, there’s no relish in that anymore.

As I’ve mentioned before, I’m a mom of two wonderful young daughters.  I don’t take any pleasure in thinking about my own impermanence anymore.  I frame my life in terms of their needs.  Sometimes, I even think of milestones.  I heave a sigh of relief that my girls have been fiercely loved in their formative years, and I hope, Harry Potter style, that my love has infused them with super powers.  Then I think, well, they’ll need me in high school.  They’ll need me in college.  They’ll need me when and if they have children.  Is there ever a point in which a loved parent’s absence is A-Okay?  Kind of like the decision to have children in the first place, there’s never a “good time to do it.”  There’s always something else we need to do to prepare.

Well, tomorrow I am going to dive in a little, in hopes that I can get that “tasty” feeling again, and not take a single moment that I am still here for granted.

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