Many many Americans have known and still do know people who have become fragile economically because they fell ill. People should not have to spend their last days worrying about health care costs. We are a civilized nation and now we are beginning to act like one.
As they say in Mexico, "death is just and even-handed for everyone since we will all die." For many, this unalterable truth provides a strong reason to celebrate life while there is still time.
A house may burn down and everything in it may disappear, but what happened in that house -- the voices that rang out, the tears shed, the laughter and heartache and disappointment and joy -- those things are never gone as long as someone is there to remember, to tell the story.
Thinking about one aspect that I find beautiful about Islam is tough for me. There are a multitude of things I love about my religion and picking one is no easy task.
Little by little I learned to let go of many thoughts that are not useful while still holding onto beautiful memories that bring me joy. This has taken time and much practice, but in doing so, I have discovered great peace in my own life.
An excerpt from "Riding the Dragon's Back, the Great Race to Run the Wild Yangtze," by Richard Bangs with Christian Kallen. At this point an American expedition is making its way to the source, but deadly waters boil ahead.
From the beginning of our time together, Isabel moved my heart deeply. Without spoken language, she communicated through her eyes, the slight lifting of the corner of her mouth to form a little smile, and with movements of her tiny fingers.
There is a word I came up with years ago, when I was still fresh from my brother's death, which cracked me open enough that I had to put myself back together in a different way. A way that left me paying closer attention to the moments, to the people in my world.
Sometimes authors don't shuffle off this mortal coil quietly or -- for want of a better word -- normally. Sometimes they meet a sticky and untimely end, and sometimes myths build up around an author's demise and we come to accept legend as fact.
Inside all of us is a great pool of grief that keeps enlarging as each fresh loss is added to the others. This is why we often find ourselves weeping for earlier losses along with a present heartache. Sometimes even a sad scene in a movie will get me into that pool, and my tears flow from that indistinguishable source.
I laughed out loud in the airport last week when I spotted the cover of Time Magazine with its melodramatic question: "Can Google Solve Death?" First, Google can never solve death. Second, Jesus Christ has already done it. And if you want to know how, just enter the words "Gospel of John" into the Google search box.
Zombies are, insofar as I understand their biological classification, undead. They aren't entirely dead, but they certainly aren't fully alive either. That sounds a lot like life with a serious chronic disease. When one's life no longer involves pleasure or the pursuit of interests, it is something of a half-life.
Hospice is a difficult decision for anyone, but it allowed me to bring my late husband home, somewhere he desperately wanted to be.
How do people get better (existentially healthier)? That is the question that I ask myself a lot. In the course of my clinical work as a psychologist I keep looking for formulas and models and recipes of wellbeing, for ways and pathways and roads to psychological sovereignty.
Sure, tech wizards think they can do anything, or that's how it often seems. But they are not alone in that delusion.
We all live with the knowledge of an inevitable death -- those of us who near middle age have likely witnessed and experienced that knowledge. And yet, when it comes, it still greets most of us with surprise.