When I was very young, I have heard of the deaths of my grandparent’s relatives. We were staying next to my mother’s ancestral home. In my memory such bad and sad news used to reach as a land phone call to my grandparents’ home at night-time. And it would be raining too. At that time my belief was that death happens only to very old people and only at night! Even now, I become tense and uncomfortable if I hear the land phone ringing on rainy nights!
As I got older I witnessed the deaths of the siblings of my parents, their cousins, and friends. My father’s death was very sudden and least expected. He was very active and was discussing something with a visitor at the fateful moment. I am trying hard to accept the reality even now after two years. I have come to realize that death can happen during day-time and that too without rain!
Of late, I have started hearing of people of my own age group leaving the physical plane. This month two of my Engineering collegemates (one was my classmate) passed away. Both of them faced untimely deaths leaving the family and friends in utter shock and grief. Though they were not in my close-friend circle, the news of their sudden demise keeps haunting me. It stresses the fact that life is so uncertain and death can happen at any moment to anyone!
Though I know death is inevitable, I continue to experience shock each time it happens to someone I know. Many a time we hear people saying that they were going to call or visit/could have called or visited someone the previous day of the death. I felt the same when my Kochumummy (my mother’s younger sister) died a few years ago. Though she was living quite close to my home (and was my favourite aunt), being a working mother of two kids, I used to postpone visiting her. We postpone things unintentionally and feel guilty when such an unexpected thing happens later. When you feel like talking to your dear ones be it a family member or a friend do that. Don’t wait for them to call you back.
We tend to look inward and analyse the lifestyle we follow when we hear such unexpected death news. We check whether we are doing enough exercise/yoga to keep us fit. We scan the labels of the food we eat and look for the word ‘organic’ in fruits, veggies, nuts, and cereals. But, I understand that my recently departed friends were very active, healthy, and health-conscious people. So, does that mean the things we consider to be the causes of death are not exactly so in reality? Is there any logic behind such happenings? Maybe there is a specific period of time we are intended to live on this planet. Is that so? What do you think?
My perspective towards life took a 180-degree turn, after my Papa’s sudden disappearance from this physical plane. I realized that it’s always better to live as if we are going to die tomorrow. We shouldn’t postpone anything thinking that we can do it later. One never knows whether the ‘later’ will come or not! Sometimes later becomes never! So we should make a list of activities that we do on a daily basis. And analyze each one to verify whether it gives us renewed energy or drains us. We can add another category of activities to this list: activities which we have not tried but would love to do if time, money or anything else was not a concern. We should focus on the energizing activities and get rid of all the draining activities. Thus we can make our life more meaningful and happy.
Reading, blogging, decorating interiors, gardening, and travelling are the activities which energise me. On the other hand, cooking three full meals daily drains me a lot. 🙂 I have decided to get rid of this draining activity with the help of a domestic cook!
Life is meant to be experienced and we must make an attempt to do at least one thing which we haven’t tried before! So I joined a Bharatanatyam class last month. I had learned to dance during my school days, until the eighth grade, for the sake of annual-day programmes. I never thought I would get an opportunity to learn classical dance again in my lifetime! Anyway, now I have come to understand that the occasional basic yoga practices which I do at home are not sufficient for me to even do the basic posture in Bharatanatyam called ‘Aramandalam’! Anyway, life begins at the end of our comfort zone, so I have decided to give it a try. 🙂
BTW what are the activities which energies you? what about those that drain you? Please share the activities which you would love to do if you have no other constraints.
Don’t forget to spend quality time with your family and friends and remember that each day is precious and try to live life to the fullest. Nothing will happen if you don’t watch a forwarded WhatsApp video as soon as you get it. Never complain in your life. Try to forgive everyone who has hurt you knowingly or unknowingly in the past. Always have gratitude. Let us live this life happily and meaningfully as long as we are allowed to stay in this beautiful, physical plane by the Almighty!
Happy empty nesting 🙂
An awareness of death encourages us to live more intensively ~ Paulo Coelho