By Racquel Ladd-Office Administrator
Death and loss are truths that I have wrestled with. Such as you would imagine two rams locking horns slipping on the crumbled rocks along a mountainside. The loss of my mother came unexpectedly to my nine year old mind and had left me battered, confused, and riddled with questions I could not answer. Life became a pursuit of truth. One absolute certainty that was found is that we, as living creations, will all face transition from this earthly life. With birth there will be death, and it will happen at a time that no one outside of our creator can determine.
Realizing that truth is a hard pill to swallow, it also brings to surface another truth of unity. Regardless of race, culture, life style, demographics, and personal preferences, every single one of us will be faced with the experiences of birth, joy, death, and grief. These universal experiences give us opportunity to bond with each other in ways that we may not have done before, providing comfort and support for one another with the truth that we are not alone. As the saying goes (most frequently in my large extended family) “it takes a wedding or a funeral to bring us all together.”
I stumbled across an excerpt by a hospice patient who was asked the question “what is it like to live your life knowing that you are dying?” and her response was “what is it like living pretending that you are not?”
Her answer was love at first sight for me! Death has always been a reality for me without the option of denial. Life was forever changed, and my experience never forgotten. Not until joining the loving, faith-filled, passion-driven family here at Emmanuel Hospice, had I began to heal in ways I never saw possible. My eyes have been opened; life is beautiful and so can be death. It can be healing and unifying, resulting in peace and a closer relationship to our creator. Death with dignity and love as a celebration of life!