Sunday, October 27, 2013

A Time for Dying

There's been a chill in the air lately.  Autumn is in full swing, and another year moves quickly along towards the end of its life.  Trees are baring their leaves at a furious pace, and little by little, it's starting to feel like a sad ending.

Maybe I'm just in this state of thought because I've been reminded of our mortality this week with the passing of two people whom I did not even know...and my mom's cat.  Snickers was the first to go, on Monday. The poor thing was only twelve years old and became inexplicably sick suddenly just a few days before.  He wasn't my favorite animal in the world, he wasn't the friendliest cat, but I did feel for the poor thing who passed way too young for any animal.

Next came the deaths of two people who passed just in the last couple of days, both connected to my pal Rich.  The news brought me to contemplate the meaning of life and my place, or purpose, in it once again.  I know it's human nature to think this way when anyone dies, but the fact that my 49th birthday is coming doesn't help matters any.  Like the year 2013, I am also in the autumn of my life.

Fall is a beautiful time of year, colorful leaves, a refreshing burst of brisk, fresh air, and Halloween.  Autumn is also a sad time, too.  It is the season when the flowers no longer bloom, the trees lose their leaves, and the cool air quickly turns to cold as a stark reminder of what's to come.  

The cycle of the year correlates so well with the cycle of life,  People are born into this world, into a conscious awakening, to live, to grow, and to learn.  The spring and summer of their lives are filled with naivete, promise, and hope, and soon enough autumn makes its appearance, giving way to a knowing maturity and a wealth of memories and experiences lived. Increasingly, though, the impending winter of our lives makes its presence known in the physicality of our experience. Aging is not all a pleasant process. 

No, autumn isn't really a time for dying.  But then again, it is.  The end can come in any season, and those of us who've reached our autumn should count our blessings at the lives we've been given so far.  The key is to cherish the memories, appreciate every moment in the present, and do all that you can do to make sure your controllable, physical endurance is nurtured and plan well for what may come.  No one really knows when time runs out, so make the most of it, no matter what season you're in!

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