Disclaimer: The opinions expressed are my own, and are not meant to influence your own choices. No feelings were deliberately harmed in the making of this blog.
On our high street there is a branch of Thorntons right next to an undertakers. Looking at the boxes of Continental Assortment on special offer, I glanced left and there was another tempting bargain. 'Pre-pay for your funeral today and get £300 off!' What to do? On the one hand, I do like chocolates. On the other, I am at an age when one has to face facts. Death is inevitable, and it is regrettable that a taboo surrounds the subject. We need to acknowledge the fact that we are going to die, plan ahead. So I summoned up my courage and went in to have a chat with the lovely silver haired lady receptionist. It felt good to make the necessary plans.
Ha Ha!? Of course I didn't, what do you take me for, some sort of morbid ghoul?
When I first came to learn about death as a child, the idea really upset me and preoccupied my thoughts. People of my parent's generation talked a lot about scary stuff. A lot of conversations would be along the lines of "There will be no third world war, the Russians will drop an atom bomb, and the end of the world will come." Somewhere along the line I came to realise that the only way to cope was to avoid ever thinking about it. I have never budged from that decision.
Joan Bakewell, obviously realising that her days as the "thinking man's crumpet" are well and truly over, has turned to campaigning for death. Good luck with that Joan. I prefer the ostrich head in the sand approach. For the same reason I don't go for body MOTs. The idea of catching a disease in time does not appeal. I am not convinced it makes much difference. Many cancers sit there and never do harm until a diagnosis is given, then the misery begins. All I can envisage is some extra time to be scared out of my wits.
I am totally fatalistic about how I will leave this life. I do my best to keep healthy, to keep some sort of quality of life, but the rest is not within my control.
What are the benefits of talking about death? I already struggle with bouts of crippling anxiety and depression, why on earth would I choose to add to my burdens?
I have a will. I insist on cremation. If my partner is still around, he can decide what form of funeral he feels up to arranging, if any. If he goes before me, I will decide for him.
Now,talking about chocolate - are you a 70% person, or will a Twix suit you better? Let's get this subject out in the open.
A Moodscope member.