Friday, January 9, 2015

Death Never Stood a Chance

I've been a bit contemplative regarding the subject of life. What is life? We can start with a foundation that it's a biological function: the breathing of air, the pumping of blood, the electric pulses of instinct and thought. Sometimes I think we take this baseline too seriously and we lose ourselves in the battle to preserve it at all costs. Congratulations, you've beat back death as we keep air flowing, blood moving, the spark of life glowing however weakly. This is life and not death so screw you, Death! We win! 

Except Death is just standing over in the corner impatiently tapping his wrist watch. OK, his i-Phone, no one wears watches anymore. Anyway, he's there and we're just slowing up his rounds and for what? A little pyrrhic victory before the final move is made. And Death always has the final move.  Death always wins. 

Except it wins NOTHING of value.  Because what is of value is not that "breathing air, blood flowing" stuff. What is of value is LIFE: the wonder of knowing joy and yes even hurts that make us do more than just exist. 

LIFE is what we feel, LIFE is sharing that feeling with others, LIFE in its most pure and perfect form transcends the boundaries of mere human existence, transcends the limits of the body. And it is then that we beat death. We beat death before it even gets here because all death can take is a shell that gasps out a last breath. Death cannot take the blessings and the burdens of LIFE that we experienced in their fullness in OUR time.  

When death comes beyond our time, it doesn't win because it cannot take that which is no longer there. LIFE has been lived; death can only come and take whatever's left. 

Thursday, January 8th, 2014, death came for what was left of Becky Smith, my mother in law. Death laid claim to a body worn feeble and useless by disease. 

But what truly defined her defied death: LIFE, the joy and the passions that made this woman the marvel of so many who loved her. LIFE, given form in the boundless love for her family, her husband, children and grandchildren. 

Multiple sclerosis crippled her body and mind in bits and pieces, destroying that basic foundation of life.  But when it came to her LIFE, death never stood a chance. 

The Wheel of Death and Life Turns

Putting the “fun” in funeral, at the service for former First Lady Barbara Bush, former President Barack Obama made current First Lady M...