Insanity Crash Dreams: Mortality

Death. What a word to use to start a blog post, but it is what this post is about. There are three things that make me totally inept to post about such a heavy subject, but seeing as I am offshore on nights, I thought it best to take some time out to have a little blog.

The first thing is that I am an atheist. In my view of the world I see death as a finality, the end, and a total finish to your existence. If you think differently to myself then you might find this a hard fact to bear but I take great solace from it – this life is all we get and I am so glad to have it. A good postulation by Bill Bryson is if you think about all the chance events that have to have taken place to get you to where you are, alive, when you think about all the crazy things and coincidences and mysteries that had to happen to allow you to spark to life, it is strange to think we have even the arrogance to assume there is something else. Everything else on this planet has the same right to be here as we have, and are as evolved (if not more) than we are, so thinking we have some right to life after death – and death is something that not only happens all the time but to everything – when almost everything else doesn’t is a majestic hallmark of the intellect we posses.

Secondly, I am totally an amateur when it comes to death itself. I have only been to two funerals, and the first one was my Grandfather, my mum’s father, 10 years ago this year. I remember little about it being 13 at the time, but I do remember the tradegy and suddenness of it, and the tone of my aunt’s phone call which I answered to pass it on to my Mum. I remember my dad taking me aside one night, and telling me my Mum was being very brave in front of Lynn and myself, and I admire her for the strength she had.

Thirdly, the other funeral I went to was a different kind. The kind you don’t factor into talks about funerals. It was the funeral of Janet, the cleaner that worked in the Link that I worked in. There was a generational and class gap between Janet and I, but the thing was I really got on well with her – it was hard not to. I had good banter with her when we worked and she holds a place in my life that is irreversible, important, and rather sweet – she bought me my first ever pint in a pub. Being told of her passing was shocking – on the stairs, in the basement, near the stockroom, and that feeling that many have when they attend their first funeral was probably totally different from mine – it was a friend, someone exclusive from the bubble of relative-death feelings.

The inredible thing was that during the ceremony I felt outside of the grief because it was a catholic service. I have not been to any kind of church, so sitting there with a mutual (and probably at an even more increased degree for other reasons) pariah was disconcerting, but in the time of grief this friend and I went for lunch and over a few burgers and cokes became closer friends than we have been. I suppose in my world view this makes no difference to the sum of all things, but if Janet’s beliefs mean that in fact she does know what her passing created between the two of us, then which one counts?

The reason I have been spurred to write a post about death was a dream I had last night.* Basically, in this dream, someone very close to me, a family member in effect, died. I will not reveal the member or the circumstances, but it was such a vivid dream that I lay awake for an hour or so contemplating the emotions and even started to write this post on my phone before packing it in.

This was supposed to be a humorous post about a mental dream I had (it is even saved as a draft in my blogger account) but this seemed a more appropriate way of starting a new series. Feeling burned out? Try Jonathan’s Death, Trivialised to cheer you up.