A matter of life and death

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

I've contemplated writing this post for the last year or so, but have never quite gotten around to it. The views expressed in this post are of myself and many people I know. By "we" I refer to many many people in general, but I realise that not everyone feels this way.

Firstly I want to talk about life. New life in fact. Babies, if you will. What is it that "we" find so fascinating about babies? What makes "us" go ga-ga over them? They're everywhere! I see babies almost every day being pushed or carried around by their Mum or Dad (or their nanny in New York!) and every time I see one, I go all gooey inside. Now before you blame my biological clock (tick tock tick tock), I have to point out 2 things:

1. I've ALWAYS been like this
2. I'm not the only one who starts pulling funny faces whenever there's a baby around

4.3 new babies are born every second!! Babies are common. And I don't mean in the chav sense of the word, I just mean they are a dime a dozen, yet every baby is a miracle and something to be in awe of. "We" will never get over the wonder that is the warm bundle of goodness wrapped up in a blanket. *sigh*

And then there's the other end of a life. Death. Again, death is so common. Around 2 people die every second of every day. As my Dad says, "Death is a part of life." People go through stages of grief that are often unbearable. I can't imagine this level of grief, but I know that sooner or later, I'll have to deal with it. I have known people who have died and I have bawled my eyes out at their funeral. I know a lot of these tears have been for their families - a lot of my grief in these instances has been out of empathy for their loved ones left behind. But I also believe in a life after this one, which brings comfort in the midst of the heartache.

I feel I am categorically ill-equipped and unqualified to speak with any level of authority, on such life-changing experiences, even though I have witnessed a birth (the second most amazing thing I've ever experienced. The first being the commitment I made to Hubs on our wedding day) and have grieved over death. It's just one of those things I find fascinating. We are mesmerised by birth and can be broken by death. We are captivated by the face of a newborn, and can be scarred for life by the death of a loved one.

We rejoice in the start of a new life, and I like to think we can rejoice in a celebration of a life that has ended.

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