Why are we so afraid of death and how do we prepare for it? For something that’s inevitable we sure do our best to avoid it. Mercedes Grant takes us on a personal journey of grief and resolution.
A Reshuffling Of Atoms
“It is December 14, 2016, five years since the death of Gloria. She was the first woman in her temperament and in her convictions. Gloria always sought the company of flowers and trees, toiling over garden beds and new species to propagate. She volunteered as a master gardener with the Calgary zoo. I suspect she may have enjoyed the plants company to most peoples, but who can blame her. She was a closet astronomer also, keeping up to date with all of the latest news from NASA. She grew up in a traditional Ukrainian Catholic environment, but developed her own ideas about the world and its wonders at a young age. Her devotion to the natural world was reflected in her practises, composting in the suburbs of Calgary and developing an advanced and very particular household recycling system long before such things were considered normal by most. Gloria was awed and softened by the vast brilliance of this planet and of human innovation. She planned to donate her body to science when she died. It was early afternoon on a cold bright day when Gloria, my mother, took her last breath.”
Talking to residents of Cortes Island: modern death midwives, experts and my friends to explore how or disconnection with the cycle of the natural world influences or relationship to our own mortality.
Top photo credit: Graves by Mark J. Handy via Flickr (CC BY SA, 2.0 License)