When I was young I remember crying one day. Crying at the thought of one of my family dyeing. I just knew it could not be. So, I volunteered to go instead because I knew that staying behind would be the hard part, then I could be the one to greet the others. Year after year passed and I didn’t die but a few distant relatives did. I never took their deaths badly because I saw it as a release from pain they had been suffering from. And I began to think death just didn’t bother me as much as I thought it would. Still, I expected to die young.
Then I got married and I knew new fear. Would I die before he got to serve a mission? I know… it sounds funny but I feared that I wouldn’t get to go with him. Yet I prepared myself and him for me to die at a young age. I had volunteered and I had no desire to live without him, even if death didn’t bother me that much.
Then I watched my father die. Yet, I wasn’t there the day he passed. I can still remember packing after recieving the phone call that he had passed and doing math just to prove to myself I wasn’t supposed to be there. I remember exactly where I was and what I was reading on the drive there when I knew that the Lord could still raise him and he could be alive and well when I got back to the house. I remember walking into a shockingly empty room and realized that the body had already been taken. And I had never said goodbye. I never wanted to say goodbye. Oh the shock… no Dad sitting up healthy and eating those stupid peanut butter and jelly with grilled and buttered bread… no, just grief. And dispight the moments when I feel him near, I miss him.
Now I look at my daughters and for the first time I fear dyeing. I fear my husband’s death even more. How could they at such a young tender age go through the death of a parent. I am petrified of them dieing. But how could I stand to be on the other side of the vale and not be able to hold them and comfort them and… I need to live for them. I need him to live for us… for I could never provide what he can.
So here I am… having changed my mind. And yet still as vonerable as ever. Should it be me or should it be them… so natural and yet… though my father is not gone… I fear going through another death. Yet I cannot avoid it, for life is only a point between two places and both must be passed in order for any of this to make sense.
I used to laugh at the bad guys and the foolish plot lines where the goal is to live forever. “Don’t they know that the only way to live forever is to die?” But in the end I am as bad as they are. For the only reason they fear death is the same reason I do… we fear losing that which we love the most….