The Psychic View – A Poetic Farewell
By Marjorie Young
I know a very lovely woman named Natalie; beautiful, gifted, and a professor of music. She has led an adventurous life; teaching in Africa and spreading her love of its music captured much of her energy. Meeting her as a client, we became friends over the years, always feeling that in some ways we are kindred spirits.
Some time back, Natalie was diagnosed with cancer. She received treatment and was pronounced cancer free…only to have it return recently. Unfortunately, it had spread throughout her body and the doctors eventually decided there was nothing more to be done.
Clearly this is difficult, even traumatic news. But my friend greeted it with courage and positivity. Instead of mourning her coming ‘end’ she chose to transform it into a celebration. She would give a party, inviting loved ones from near and far. There would be live music, fun, and food. Moreover, she would take the opportunity to give away most of her possessions to those who would especially appreciate them. Perhaps most importantly, her friends and family would be able to express their affection and support, as well as sharing treasured memories together. And Natalie would convey her love and gratitude in return for all her many blessings.
How often do we attend a funeral or memorial service where those who knew the ‘departed’ deliver eulogies praising them to the skies? And how often do we comment ‘if only so-and-so were here to hear this!’ How far more poetic and practical to carry out this ‘life review’ while our loved one is still with us! Perhaps some might think a ‘farewell party’ ‘morbid’…but death is something awaiting us all. Sadly, not all are lucky enough be afforded a ‘big-goodbye.’ We may be felled by a heart attack, or hit by a car. Or perhaps a sudden illness might leave us too depleted for such ‘festive’ gatherings. But should we granted this chance, what a boon it could be!
In today’s world, there is little that is considered ‘forbidden.’ Sex used to be, but it could hardly be more blatantly displayed or discussed these days. Religion and politics were also verboten, but that hardly applies now. Yet, ‘death’ remains the great taboo! There is an ostrich ‘hiding one’s head in the sand’ approach prevailing to this day. This is especially true if someone is sick; even on death’s door…when it may be considered ‘cursing’ the ‘victim’ if the subject is brought up, even in a delicate manner. If we evade it sufficiently, perhaps it will go away…seems to be the prevailing wisdom.
Obviously, few look forward to the unknown, whether possessing belief in an afterlife or not. But how marvelous when someone like Natalie decides to make the event her own rather than avoiding or dreading it. When my time approaches, if I’m lucky enough to receive due notice, I will be inspired by her example and make a merry occasion of looking back on my life and all the phenomenal people and events that made it so brilliantly memorable. Death, like life, remains ultimately our own creation. So let us choose to both live and die with joy and courage!
Marjorie is available for readings at the Ballard Sunday Market, her Ballard home, or by phone.
Email her: firstname.lastname@example.org
See her award-winning fantasy/adventure series: www.theboywithgoldeneyes.com
Follow her on Twitter: @psychicmargie