Thoughts on dying, sustainability, and what remains.
It's been more than a year since C first started asking about death. As I struggled to find the right words, somehow the conversation turned into talking about compost, food scraps, worms, some of the many reasons we avoid plastic, and how dying is something that happens because eventually everything turns back into dirt.
When your two-year-old starts asking big questions -not the big, grownup, complicated, emotionally-loaded nuanced questions, but the "why is that bug not moving any more? Is it asleep?" questions, it challenges us to find ways to explain the big concepts in authentic, factual, soul deep ways. My heart leaps into my throat as I realize the awesome task on my plate.
Eventually everything turns back into dirt. Dirt is so important.
We recently returned from a whirlwind trip to my mum's childhood stomping grounds for a memorial service for my grandparents. My father's parents are also deceased. My bonus extra set of grandparents are starting to arrange extra care and help as they age. It has been an exercise in human nature observing the preparations, the distributions, the contradicting opinions, the generational shifts, and people's best intentions being at cross purposes.
While I still feel inexperienced and green, in my mid-thirties I am no longer a "young adult." My thoughts have been pondering aging, what we leave behind, what we are remembered for, by whom, and how much any of that matters.
Without getting too philosophical or lost in poeticism:
we are only blessed with a short time in this life we have here.
Let's be kind.
Let's be kind to ourselves, to our children and family, to our planet and resources, to the jackhole in traffic, to that parent and their struggling child, to that irritating co-worker, our loved ones, those we understand, and to those we don't.
We are remembered for how we make people feel.
Eventually everything turns back into dirt and while we are lucky enough to be alive, each of us can make the world a better place.
7.) “As you read my stories of long ago I hope you will remember that things truly worthwhile and that will give you happiness are the same now as they were then. It is not the things you have that make you happy. It is love and kindness and helping each other and just plain being good. ” -Laura Ingalls Wilder