On the Topic of Death & Dying

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Real Estate Agent with DFW FINE PROPERTIES 0506509

On the Topic of Death and Dying

March 26, 2011

Not a cheery topic, I know... but I have read several posts over the last few days and months about AR members who are going through a personal loss. I am sure this is not a topic that people want to read, after all, we are conditioned to have a positive attitude and not think negative thoughts. But this is life and some of you are suffering; therefore, I want you to know that others care about you.

With the focus on income, setting goals, retirement plans, life achievements, we all fail to come to the realization that anyone who lives, has to die. It may be as a direct result of an accident, disease, sickness, self-inflicted, or no reason at all. The sad truth is anyone that lives, regardless of time here on earth has to die. Nobody lives forever in the human flesh form as we know it. What happens after death is your own personal belief or a topic you don't want to discuss... I understand and I respect that.

Having experienced my husband's dying and watching him come back to me three times before his final passing, I can tell you, I was the one who was more afraid and fearful, than he was. In those first few moments that he came back to me there was a distinct difference on the look on his face, the sound and tone of his voice and the few words he described after his near death experience.  I could tell, he was in a different place and he had no fear, just peace, a peace I could not understand. It wasn't until the third time that the doctor pulled me aside and told me, "Listen, you have to let him go; he can't die in peace because you're not ready to let him go." I was told I had to go in there and tell him it was okay to die - that was the hardest thing I ever had to do.

Few people choose to die, but many know when it's time to let go. As we proceed through life, we all have personal experiences and accounts on death. Many cannot talk about it; many don't want to talk about it - it's okay.

Death is a devastating experience, especially when it happens to your loved one. Whether it's a spouse, mother, father, child, friend, acquaintance, or a stranger, it's a painful transition that often is very hard on people. That means you're only human and each human being has to process death by themselves. Others may console them, but it's up to the individual how they decide whether to accept, let go immediately, hang on to the memory, become angry, go into denial, etc. This is part of the grieving process and no one can go through it except you. If you are a personal believer in faith, having faith can and will get you through it. If you are not a believer, you will still manage to get through it. Every person has a right to be respected, regardless of their personal believes.

Life without the person you loved or cared about will be different. Although it will be tense at first with difficulty and a painful transition, it is also the beginning of a new life, new opportunities, and you will develop new insights about the way you choose to go on and the decisions you make. Let no one force you to make any decisions you're not ready to make. With time, you will figure it out, it just takes time.

I do urge you to not neglect yourself or others within your circle of family and friends. Pulling the covers over your head and not wanting to deal with it, only makes the process take longer than necessary. If you need help, it's okay to seek it, especially during the first few months. Often times, the best help comes from people outside of your comfort zone, people you do not know previously; but if you are in the hands of a professional or someone you didn't know  before, you might be surprised how much easier it is to talk and express yourself just because they are prepared to listen.

I hope this information has been helpful to you, especially if you are grieving. My prayers go out to all of you who are suffering because of loss. Although loss is necessary because the cycle of life is true, it is still painful and you have a right to come to grips with your own pain and sorrow. Some ways to help you cope with your suffering may include taking a long walk - try not to drive, do some gardening - pulling weeds is a great therapy, writing down your feelings - you may not want to share this with others; listen to music, paint, or find a hobby that you can get lost in - it will help you to express yourself. In conclusion, I wish you the best; others do too and I'm wishing you good fortune for the productive years ahead. Be strong; others need you too.

These are not your traditional flowers, but they come to you with love from my garden. In case you hadn't noticed, I'm not your traditional girl.

Peace & Understanding,

Patricia

All photos and written content were produced by Patricia Feager. Copyright 2011 - All Rights Reserved. This content may not be reproduced or reprinted, except for Active Rain Re-blogging, without express written permission of Patricia Feager, REALTOR®, Keller Williams Realty, Flower Mound, TX.

 

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Rainmaker
2,020,362
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
DFW FINE PROPERTIES - Southlake, TX
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Sheila,

I'm glad to hear that you are progressing. I've kept you in my thoughts and prayers. This journey we must take after our mothers pass is often a challenge, especially for women. When I think of new beginnings, I instantly think of motherhood. It's where all life begins. If a child wasn't nurtured, by a mother or a substitute, it would not exist. As children, we depend on our mothers. As teens, we depend on them less. As a girl becomes a new mother, she often turns to her mother for guidance. When there are grandchildren, we want our mothers to share in our children's lives too. The bond between a mother and child is like no other on earth. But when the chain is broken, there's a void, a pain, a loss like no other.

Mothers are not perfect. Just as kids annoy their mothers, mothers can often annoy their children, even adult children - it's because we are human;they are still our mother. But when there's no going back, it hits you hard and it's time for the daughter to stand on her own two feet without her mother, and it makes you uncomfortable, sad, lonely... but it also makes you stronger. With time, it does make you stronger. All the good qualities emulate within you, because you are your mother's daughter.

Channeling your emotions into positive venues, such as you described, "taking walks and making photos," helps. I saw your green photos today before I came back to mine and it moved me. There was something about that picture that was so different from others I've seen you post - now I know why! That first photo, in particular was inspirational for me.

Thanks Sheila, for letting me converse with you again via ActiveRain. Have a great day.

Patricia 

Mar 27, 2011 04:12 AM #14
Rainmaker
2,020,362
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
DFW FINE PROPERTIES - Southlake, TX
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Carole,

You've experienced loss more than once this year and each death triggers memories from the one before. What you described about your neighors daughter is pure tragedy. We say to ourselves, "she was so young..." The words you used describe your reaction to the event rings true for me too. What you said is exactly what happens to people when the media broadcasts information about a deceased person ... we watch from a distance as the events unfold.

The truth is, there isn't a lot of people talking to us about what to do. So we watch at a distance and we think of our own personal experiences, and as you said, tears come out of no where and they begin to stream down our cheeks. It's a human emotion. Your neighbor is going to need space and the time for her healing will probably be longer.

My cousin lost her daughter in a drunk driving accident. She was never the same. That's a different type of sadness that digs deep into the soul, the mind, the heart, the body... it's a chain reaction of emotions that are like electronic impulses we can not see, but we feel it.

Carole, the experience you shared about being there at your mother's side at the moment of her death is true for me too. Being there in that room with my husband at the moment of his death was unlike anything I ever experienced in my life before that too. It's hard to describe the peace you feel when the spirit is lifted and the pain and suffering disappears off that person, but you describe it eloquently and truthfully. The problem is, when we try to tell it to others who hadn't experienced it, they don't want to hear about it, so we stay silent. We deny the experience. But we shouldn't. I'm sure you will agree with me, that it was better to experience it with your mom than without her.

I think that's the reason why it hurt me so much when my mother passed, I wasn't there...

Carole, your words are beautifully written and expressed with pure honesty. Peace is with you, I can tell. You will continue to be there for others. Have a peaceful day.

Patricia

Mar 27, 2011 04:29 AM #15
Ambassador
1,974,101
Silvia Dukes PA, Broker Associate, CRS, CIPS, SRES
Tropic Shores Realty - Ich spreche Deutsch! - Spring Hill, FL
Florida Waterfront and Country Club Living

Patricia, it's always a difficult thing to find the right words to say when someone has passed on and you have expressed yourself so eloquently.  You are right, death is part of life and we do need to remember that. Thank you.

Mar 27, 2011 05:08 AM #16
Rainmaker
873,234
Debbie Walsh
Shahar Management - Middletown, NY
Hudson Valley NY Real Estate 845.283-3036

Patricia well written and straight from the heart!  Hugs to you my friend for reaching out in such a compassionate way.  Thanks for the visit to my bird!

Mar 27, 2011 05:33 AM #17
Rainmaker
2,020,362
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
DFW FINE PROPERTIES - Southlake, TX
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Silvia,

I appreciate what you had to say - thank you! Unfortunately, no one comes into this world with any guarantees. Finding the right words to say takes courage too, so we need to be mindful of how we choose our words. In my opinion, something genuine, is better than nothing at all.

It makes it harder on the people who remain behind, if there isn't anyone there to validate their feelings. Just because the person doesn't want to talk about it immediately, it doesn't mean they won't be ready at another time. People need time to heal and it helps to talk about it with people you trust. We need to always remember to take care of the people when they are alive, as well as their memory after they are gone.  

Thanks again Silvia.

Patricia

Mar 27, 2011 08:03 AM #18
Rainmaker
2,020,362
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
DFW FINE PROPERTIES - Southlake, TX
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Debra, thank you for your kindness. Speaking from my heart is the only way I know how to communicate.

Thank you. Also, I enjoyed visiting your bird!

Patricia

 

Mar 27, 2011 08:07 AM #19
Rainmaker
918,418
Ann Hayden
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties-St. Louis Missouri - Chesterfield, MO
SelectAnn.com

Patricia,

What a thoughtful post.  I am sorry to hear of your husband passing.  My step dad has "beat" death three times now but I think he is getting tired...94 years old.

Ann Hayden in Wildwood, MO

Mar 27, 2011 08:22 AM #20
Ambassador
614,385
Pat Haddad, ABR, CRS, ePRO, GRI
Keller Williams Indianapolis Metro NE - Carmel, IN
Carmel, Fishers, Westfield IN Real Estate Expert

Patricia--From the time you joined AR you have been a different 'kind' of blogger.  Taking time to write meaningful comments on other's posts and posting on topics not always related to real estate.  This was one of your best.  What can possibly be more difficult than losing a loved one?  Can there ever be too much care, concern and condolence?  I think not.  You have expressed your thoughts with so much understanding and insight.  I am so sorry for your own personal loss of your husband.  You have taken that experience and used it to help others.  Thank you for your selflessness!

Mar 27, 2011 10:23 AM #21
Rainmaker
2,020,362
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
DFW FINE PROPERTIES - Southlake, TX
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Ann,

It was not a recent passing. Believe me, it took years to come to grips. I think the cruelest thing people asked on a regular basis was, "how much life insurance did he leave you." For me, that was unforgiving. 

You're very lucky to still have your dad at 94 years young. I'm sure those last three Chinese Fire Drills was not easy on you. Trauma like that tends to take a piece of your heart too, doesn't it? In my opinion, because people don't generally talk about it, nobody knows what to expect and it's hard to get the lump out of your throat. Plus you charge to get to there, in the hopes that you get there in time putting yourself and others at great risk. It's not easy but I'm glad so many of us are talking about it here on AR. Thanks Ann.

Patricia    

Mar 27, 2011 12:18 PM #22
Rainmaker
2,020,362
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
DFW FINE PROPERTIES - Southlake, TX
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Pat,

Thanks again for your sincerity about my style of writing. As a new blogger, I didn't know what to expect, but by reading other people's posts, you get to know them. Life is about relationship building, isn't it? 

Also, I never know if I'm saying too much or not enough. I finally decided, I just have to be me. Whether I'm right, or whether I'm wrong, I don't know but I really like to make comments and I really, really like to get feedback on my work. But most of all, I enjoy the company of AR folks who take the time to comment back to me. That let's me know I'm okay. And if I don't hear back, that's okay too. One of these days, I just might read the rule book, but for now, I'm blogging by my own rules and I hope I'm not offending anyone.

Pat, you've given me some good feedback. Thanks for your patience and not giving up on me.

Patricia 

Mar 27, 2011 12:27 PM #23
Rainmaker
563,760
Linda D. Pufford
Stage with Divine Style - Home Staging - Novato, CA
ASPM, Marin/Sonoma Home Stager

Patricia,

You are so kind and so very thoughtful.  This is really a beautiful post!  I agree with Pat and I know other AR members feel that same way too, that you really write from your heart.  Not just in your post's but in every comment that you write.  It just makes me want to get to know you better and better.  You have been given a real gift and you use it for good to help others. 

I am sorry to hear about the loss of your husband... thanks for sharing that with all of us.  Reading how you have used what you went through to show others that there is hope and a way to have peace again is so important.  Letting others know that it is ok to grieve and process through the pain at their own pace and time is reassuring and helps others to feel that they are ok in what and how they are feeling and moving forward with it all.  You are a very special lady...  and the title you have been given the "Queen" is very deserving of you!  Thank you so much for making a difference here at AR.  You are a gift to us all!!!

Mar 27, 2011 12:37 PM #24
Rainmaker
841,108
Joshua Zargari
MJ Decorators Workshop LI staging and home decorating - Lynbrook, NY
MJ Decorators Workshop

Hi Patricia.

This is a very moving post...Life goes on no matter what happens...

Be strong, be brave, be busy...

Wishing you the best.

Mar 27, 2011 12:45 PM #25
Rainmaker
5,384,484
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

Wonderful post that should be very helpful for many. Thanks for sharing your experience. Some of us are at the age when these issues definitely need to be discussed.

 Life is better when you have flowers to photograph!

Mar 27, 2011 01:07 PM #26
Ambassador
2,215,299
Wanda Kubat-Nerdin - Wanda Can!
Prado Real Estate South - St. George, UT
So Utah Residential, Referral & Relocation REALTOR

Patricia, I do believe your words are healing, nonintrusive and comforting for those going through the loss of someone they care about. Thank you for the flowers, they are beautiful...columbines? And because they are yours, it makes them even more special.

Mar 27, 2011 01:14 PM #27
Rainmaker
2,020,362
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
DFW FINE PROPERTIES - Southlake, TX
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Linda,

You brought tears to my eyes. I needed time to sit back and let your words comfort me like a blanket. The purpose of this post was not to make it about me, but to share what I know because I have the deepest respect for those who are currently grieving. Several recent posts came from AR members who are having a difficult time because of a personal loss. I felt compelled to express my feelings in the hopes that I could provide some type of comfort to them.

I am cognizant that it's not a topic that is often discussed but I think that's the problem with our society. What is natural has become taboo and people are afraid to talk about it, so when it does happen to each of us, which it will, some do, and others don't know how to handle it. 

Through first hand knowledge, I think we all have the gift to be empathetic and compassion towards others. Some of the strongest people I know, had the most trouble grieving over a pet. If a pet deserves that much sympathy, why can't we do that for our social brothers and sisters on a social media?

Struggling in business is hard enough. Going through a long hard winter, is depressing. Financial woes is terrifying, but the loss of a human life or the life of a companion because it may have been a pet can be overwhelming. It's my personal belief that we were all created to help one another and not hurt one another. Being kind-hearted is the only way I know how to live.

Linda, I don't mean to be disrespectful, but I still don't think I'm a "queen," I'm just a humble person who cares about people. I do want to say, thank you, you gave me tears of joy, something I wasn't expecting. Thank you.

Patricia

Mar 27, 2011 01:49 PM #28
Rainmaker
2,020,362
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
DFW FINE PROPERTIES - Southlake, TX
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Joshua,

Those are very comforting words for all and such a great motto to live by: 

Be Strong

Be Brave

Be Busy

Thank you so much for adding something of sincere value for all those who are grieving.

Patricia

Mar 27, 2011 01:53 PM #29
Rainmaker
2,020,362
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
DFW FINE PROPERTIES - Southlake, TX
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Roy,

On this topic, age doesn't matter. What does matter is the qualify of life you live and how you treat other people. I envy people who are older than me who have had the good fortune of being together 40, 50, 60 years or more! Now that's a WONDERFUL life! I am always in awe when I see older couples together holding hands and when they don't seem to be bothered by weight or appearance.

One of the most special photos I ever took happened to be in North Conway, NH. I was standing on the roadside taking photos. It was a quiet day and I was in my zone, when suddenly this big HOG (Harley) pulled up and I couldn't help but look. To my surprise, a man who looked like Santa Clause, wearing blue jeans and a flannel shirt with a bandanna around his forehead jumped off and took the hand of his lady, who happened to look like Mrs. Clause. He held her chunky hand and as he helped her jiggle her weight off the bike, she leaned over and gave him a big kiss. It was a KODAK moment! I snapped the picture! I kept it as a momentum to remind me that true love is eternal.

Sharing a life together with someone you promised to love, cherish and honor is such a testimonial to the good way an individual has lived. We should ALL live each day as if time doesn't matter. Fall in love with the people who we have in our life, over and over and over again. Fall in love with flowers, butterflies, the sun, the moon, the stars, the air that you breathe. Take nothing for granted. Just keep living the best way you can.

All the best to you and your wife.

Patricia

Mar 27, 2011 02:17 PM #30
Rainmaker
2,020,362
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
DFW FINE PROPERTIES - Southlake, TX
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Wanda,

Hearing from you always means you're going to give good advice. Thank you. The flowers stick is called Aquilegia Origami Mix. I have purple and white and yellow and white. Purple is my favorite color, can you tell? I didn't know they are also called Columbines. I looked it up and you are right!

Wanda, thank you for reassuring me that in your opinion, I wasn't be intrusive. I would never want to be perceived that way, so thank you.

Patricia

Mar 27, 2011 02:32 PM #31
Rainmaker
1,072,315
Sharon Lee
Sharon Lee's Virtual Assistance - Jonesborough, TN
Retired and loving life

Patricia-I knew you had a quiet strength and I knew it came from God but I didn't know about your husband and I am truly sorry. Losing a spouse is traumatic. Another rainer that is from Flower Mound(Linda Bourgault) lost her husband a few years ago has traveled the grieving path and I can tell from her posts that it still is a struggle although she has come a long ways. She has a beautiful soul like yourself. She isn't on AR much now but is on FB. You my friend are an inspiration and a breath of fresh air and I am truly glad I came across your blogs. I am enjoying them immensely.

I have seen that flower and the name of it is on the tip of my tongue but it is escaping me so can you tell me what it is.  When I read Laura's comment above(#13) I remember when her Mom Carole passed. It was such a shock but Laura has been a equally great contributor to AR and Feng Shui as her Mom Carole was. I had plan on meeting Carole last year but life took an unexpected turn so I never got the chance to meet her and I will always be sad that I never got a chance to meet her. Here is the link to Laura's tribute to her Mom

http://activerain.com/blogsview/1652270/honoring-carole-provenzale-a-mother-a-friend-a-mentor-and-so-much-more-she-was-our-everything

Mar 28, 2011 03:27 AM #32
Rainmaker
2,020,362
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
DFW FINE PROPERTIES - Southlake, TX
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Sharon,

I think I know exactly where to find Linda Bourgault. I will find her. Thanks for the information.

I knew about Carole's mom and also replied to VB's blog to honor her. Also, Carole has already replied to this post and I've replied. Sharon, I do appreciate knowing that you have a compassionate heart. You're a great support to so many here on AR, especially me.

Thanks Sharon.

Patricia

Mar 28, 2011 07:30 AM #33
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