death and taxes

So, due to my recent near-death experience, I’ve been thinking about death. Not a very polite topic, especially in America, where people just don’t talk about death. I think it’s important to talk about …

When I was thinking I was going to die, I just couldn’t accept it would be so random, so meaningless to just drop dead over my morning coffee. Just like that. I was wondering if my life was going to flash before my eyes or something. Or would it just be utterly mundane?

When I got home from the hospital, I watched the movie Into the Void, about two guys who nearly die climbing an never-before climbed peak in the Andes. True story. One of the guys shattered his leg and got separated from his partner. He had to pull himself out of a crevasse, and then hop for miles on slippery rocks, each hop causing excruciating pain in his leg, falling down often. His fingers were frostbitten and he had been without food or water for days. At one point, he became utterly delirious and started hearing a song in his head. It was a pop song he disliked, stupid and fatuous. It played in his head for hours at full blast. He thought to himself, am I going to die to this song?

I so related to that. Amazingly, he made it down to base camp and his friends were still there. They couldn’t believe he was still alive. I wondered if I had that much determination to stay alive, that much grit. I remembered when I was bleeding internally, and felt myself slipping into unconsciousness. I felt resigned. I tried to talk my partner out of carrying me to the hospital, because it seemed like too much trouble. Maybe I’m lazy! Although I did come around, and agreed to go .. I’m glad I did.

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~ by elishashekinah on June 19, 2008.

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