Sunday, April 28, 2013

On Death and Dying- Or Not

I have a dark sense of humor, and I don't mind admitting that. An evil-sounding chuckle leaks out when something that shouldn't be funny strikes me funny. Still, the older I get the more squeamish I am about meanness, I guess because I can see better, with each passing year, how mean I can be at heart. Still, I find more things funny than I think the average person does, and that's a gift I'm thankful for.
I think I'm gloomier than a person might expect about me, too, and fear-fuller. I remember having a conversation with a friend of mine about cancer- it seemed to me like everyone is basically going about their lives waiting to find out which cancer they will end up with. Is that just me? It's just so everywhere. Somehow I think that when I'm inevitably diagnosed, I'll say "ahh, so that's what it's going to be." Maybe it'll be the killing kind, maybe it'll be the kind that gets neatly sliced out and life goes on. Still, as much as I expect my own, I'm always surprised to hear about anyone's cancer. Bad news is still so surprising.
While I waited to hear if it would be breast cancer that would be my particular cancer, or not, I thought about how relieved I'd feel to find out that it might not be the cancer for me. But you know, just because this wasn't breast cancer this time, it's not like that's crossed off the list of possibilities now. Still, it was a great relief to hear "completely benign" and I have this feeling like I've been given a bonus year or so during which I should feel especially grateful and worry-less, and relatively complaint-free. Seems I'd better lighten up.
Ann Lamott says that Christians are supposed to see death as a major change-of-address. I'm pretty cool with death but I'm less enthusiastic about dying.

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