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Posted by: catnip ( )
Date: July 16, 2018 11:21PM

On the day that y'all were sending me Happy Birthday wishes, I was very ill, very foggy-brained, and it dawned on me that I might actually be dying.

It kind of surprised me that I was not afraid. I figured that there were two possibilities: a lack of self-awareness, which my irreverent exmo friends have referred to as "the dirt nap," or a sense of awareness, and being reunited with my best friend, whom I have missed for more than three years. And I wanted to cuddle my cats again. Kisses for cat ears.

Odd, that. Not parents or other relatives. My best friend. And eventually, DH. And cats.

I was not concerned at all about Heaven or Hell. So much for religion.

I had never really thought much about death - not so up-close and personal. Have you? Just for the record, I am VERY glad to have been given some more time.

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Posted by: Nightingale ( )
Date: July 16, 2018 11:37PM

catnip: Me too, glad you're here. Have been thinking of you, but not saying so in a post.

A family member had 16 radiation treatments last summer and sailed through them. Used gentle skin lotion on area (breast) to prevent burn/dry skin and it worked well.

Still, it's an ordeal, physical, emotional, mental, every other way possible. But we kept focusing on how fortunate we were compared to a lot of the other patients. One elderly man was roaming around with his bare backside hanging out of his gown. I had to find a rad nurse and call it to his attention. Reminded me why I didn't really enjoy bedside nursing all that much. I was happy my relative was all together and only needed me for a ride to the clinic.

I've been reading your posts on your progress. This one is interesting, reading about your thoughts and feelings. This past year is the closest I've come to issues of mortality too. I always feel a bit stupified when death creeps up on friends and family - like there is any other alternative out there, as if it will perhaps bypass us until I'm too old to care or something.

So glad you're here to post. I hope you can take a cell phone or other small device with you so you can keep on chatting with us (selfishly I say, as obviously you have other things on your mind at the time rather than RfMers but still, you can see how many are here for you).

All the best in days to come. So good to hear from you. Love the cat ears. :)

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Posted by: SusieQ#1 ( )
Date: July 16, 2018 11:43PM

catnip:
I've never thought I was going to die. Other's thought I might be on my way out when I had the same illness you had some months before you became ill. I didn't know that until months after I got well.
Interestingly, it never occurred to me that I would die from the illness. I was extremely sick, never been that ill in my life. Never been in that kind of continual pain, either. My focus was on finding out what was wrong and fixing it.
It didn't help that I was diagnosed incorrectly, twice, given the wrong medication for the wrong diagnosis which I happened to have an adverse reaction to. I was frustrated and upset, and struggled for a long time, but the goal was to get better. I just had no idea it would take nearly six months to be able to resume my pre-illness life.

I thought about dying, a lot, when my husband passed, though. I got up and personal with the dying process when he was in Home Hospice and I was his 24/7 caretaker with some assistance from Hospice nurses who were amazing. They are a whole different kind of nurse. Once I realized he was not going to get better, I watched, day by day while his body shut down, little by little. He died in his sleep. That's my hope also. I'm one of two left in my direct immediate family (2 generations). I've lived longer than every single one. I have thought about what was would "take me out," though.
I haven't thought it through, it's more intellectual for me, rather than emotional.

I'm so glad you have recovered and doing well. Life is full of surprises.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/16/2018 11:45PM by SusieQ#1.

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Posted by: summer ( )
Date: July 17, 2018 12:04AM

I feel the same way as you do, Catnip. Either it will be a happy reunion, or lights out, or perhaps a combination of the two. I'm hoping for the reunion, including with my furry friends.

My mom constantly dreamed of her brothers and sisters in the two weeks before she died. The night she died, about an hour before, I could hear her talking in a friendly manner with a friend of my dad's who had also passed on. She told me that he was standing beside a plane. I like to think that my dad (a trained pilot) was at the wheel.

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Posted by: elderolddog ( )
Date: July 17, 2018 12:30AM

I suspect that I'm going to get a spanking...

I once thought my days were numbered. I was certain that my heart was failing; I didn't know why, I just was certain that it was down to its last few beats.

I drove myself to the ER and wow, do they give the heart problem people priority. It was right from the check-in desk to where they keep all the cardiac monitoring machines.

After data had been gathered, a doctor came by to tell me that my heart was as strong as an ox who rowed for Oxford's 12 and that I was likely having an anxiety attack. See, that's how White I was raised!

Lying there waiting, I was calm as could be, reviewing my life, wincing a lot as this and that episode scrolled by. But I wasn't scared. My youngest sons were still in high school and I was sad that I wouldn't see them grow up, but I totally accepted this outcome, because our lots in life are not always ours to chose.

I certainly had no thoughts about a hereafter. I did not waver from my strong atheist convictions.

That was in about the mid-1990s. The experience didn't change me, except that I looked up anxiety attacks.

I wonder if we all die the same, or differently?

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: July 17, 2018 02:39AM

If you are ever short of books (unlikely, I know), you could try this one:

https://www.amazon.com/Every-Man-Dies-Alone-Novel/dp/1935554042

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: July 17, 2018 02:43AM

catnip,

I'm like you. Other than logistics--children, friends, pets, overdue library books--I do not fear death.

Nor, as a militant agnostic, do I fear God. For if She exists and cares about bare shoulders, I don't care about Her.

There's peace in that.

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Posted by: Mother Who Knows ( )
Date: July 17, 2018 03:18AM

I'm so glad you are here, Catnip!

I hope all of our good wishes collectively cheer you up! You have a lot of people who care about you.

I thought I was going to die several times. One time, I was falling fast, down a slippery moss-covered cliff, headed towards sharp rocks and the ocean. It was a long slide, and when the initial panic was over, I felt peaceful, too. It was like everything was out of my hands, and I was OK with letting whatever happened, happen.

The other times I thought I was going to die, was when my ex-husband beat and/or strangled me into unconsciousness. Before I lost consciousness, I thought, "I don't care if he kills me. I just want the pain to end." When I was being strangled and couldn't breathe, it was a relief to leave my body.

"Dying" a violent death--or perceiving myself in the process of being murdered--did something to my soul. I knew that I was being "split into pieces", and parts of me have never come back. I have lived a full life, have loved, worked, raised children, etc, but that old "spark", my spunky, sassy, risk-taking side of me was gone forever. I had to get therapy for PTSD.



Is there some kind of therapy, to help people face their own death? I think my mother would have benefitted from a tranquilizer, to help her through some of those nights of anxiety. She was TBM, though, and didn't believe in taking mood-altering drugs.

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Posted by: cl2 ( )
Date: July 17, 2018 08:26AM

It has been a long time since I was not afraid to die. I think that happened when I lost beliefs, but I had to stay for my kids and still do.

I've found it interesting in my life now that I have so many on the other side that I long for that, too.

I have to believe I believe there is something, but I struggle with that, too.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/17/2018 08:27AM by cl2.

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Posted by: ificouldhietokolob ( )
Date: July 17, 2018 09:05AM

I'm glad too!

Death is gonna get all of us.
But for you (and hopefully me) -- not yet.
We still have living to do.

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Posted by: Amyjo ( )
Date: July 17, 2018 09:25AM

Is it death that grips us in fear as much as living?

Fear of the unknown is something I reckon with in this life go-around, including what comes after it. Or maybe it's laced with curiosity of what comes next.

One of my very best friends died in 2007 from breast cancer that runs in her family. She was 48. After she died I had a dream she came to me and wanted me to come away with her on an adventure. We'd had numerous such adventures in high school, when we played hooky in Ogden, Utah one year.

She was like a soul sister to me. When we met, I had the deja vu sense we'd known each other in a previous lifetime. We were that close. So it wasn't all that much of a surprise when she wanted to whisk me away on another adventure. Only this time if I went, it would be to where she was in heaven. And I wasn't ready to go there yet.

Fast forward to this past year when I dealt with my own bout of breast cancer. I had another dream of her this spring, where we were both weeping on each other's shoulders as we shared the same illness - hers and mine. She has connected with me from across the grave, in a spiritual sense.

I've known two men who were the loves of my life, where I had the deja vu sense we'd known each other before this lifetime. They are also both deceased now. Likewise, I've received messages from them their spirits survived death.

Likewise for my brother who passed from cancer at age six. Both of my parents, and even my step-parents have given me signs they are on the other side. And other relatives I've known.

Do I fear death? Not really. There is still much I would like to do before I cross over from this life, God willing.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 07/17/2018 10:34AM by Amyjo.

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Posted by: thedesertrat1 ( )
Date: July 17, 2018 02:15PM

When I was having my heart attack, before the medics arrived, my thought was "I wonder if this is what it feels like to die?"



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/17/2018 02:16PM by thedesertrat1.

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Posted by: Amyjo ( )
Date: July 17, 2018 02:54PM

One of my TBM friends I've known for decades told me when her father died at the age of 93 or 94, as he lay in his hospital bed (he'd held high callings in his local ward and stake over his lifetime,) his last words were "I'm dead now."

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Posted by: Soft Machine ( )
Date: July 17, 2018 02:58PM

I'm glad you're ALL here - and glad to be here, too.

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