It has been Dying Matters week this week in the UK and the focus this year was on ‘A good place to die’.
Over the week I have talked about our line of duty and what drives us. I have done my Wednesday night live discussing how death is getting divorced from the dying part of life. I have done an Insta live with @Thecelebrantdirectory talking about ‘Living’ funerals. I have talked about when your ‘happy ever after’ becomes ‘until death do us part’ Finally, I have talked about sharing how your loved one lived, with me, rather than how they died. So I have been opening up the conversation and the response has been very positive, with lots of you private messaging me and supporting my work – so firstly, thank you.
Dying does matter. Dying is what makes life precious. If we didn’t’ die, then where is your motivation for making the best of your time in your mortal body?
Dying matters to me. I’m going to try and break it down, but essentially, I take a holistic approach to life and death as the circle of life, and I hope it gets your thinking.
I know my body is mortal. I hope my energy and spirit go on, but I know for certain, that I will die. As will everyone.
So I want to die happy knowing I love my life and knowing I am truly grateful for every breath that I take. I want to die, feeling happy, proud of myself, and grateful for my life.
I’ve started to journal – took me ages to get my head around what journaling was. I was trying to make it more complicated than it ever needed to be and I was making up stories in my head that I was no good at it and I wouldn’t be able to do it properly. A friend sent me ‘the 6-minute journal’ @createurbestself. I just had to fill it in. I journal. It helped me. I feel better. I consciously love my life. I know emotionally, I shall be in ‘a good place to die’ if that happened tomorrow.
Achievements – Legacy
I think it’s only human to hope that you have made a good mark in the world. That you have left a legacy that is positive, and that for some one, somewhere, one has had significance. Even more than significance, I hope to have had true love – both given and received as an experience. I want to have made and left the world a better place. For me, it’s my family, being a mother and a wife, but also being a friend and a ‘home’ for people – whether that is by making my house a home, or by making space for people to have a place in my heart. It’s not where I lay my hat that’s my home, it’s where I open my heart and share true love.
I’d love to be finically successful, have a trust fund for every child and live my life debt free, but that’s secondary to achieving a feeling of true love that makes my children feel safe and secure when I die – not lost and helpless. When I die, if I can leave a space where true love grows, I will only become bigger after the grave, not smaller. That is the legacy I’m working towards. I want to close my eyes at night, knowing I gave love and am loved. That what I see as successfully being in ‘a good place to die’
Sustainability to the death
I love this perfect planet. I want to do my bit even after death.
I have been awarded the businesses sustainability trademark, that comes with being accepted as a Surrey Hills Enterprises member – it’s my life style, so it needs to be part of my death.
I have purchased a shallow grave plot, @clandonwood nature reserve natural burial ground in Surrey. No flame cremation or embalming, and my coffin to be biodegradable. I would like the flowers to be home grown – so no air miles. It might be that flowers picked from my loved ones gardens for me, or it might be from my local flower farmer @plantpassion because support local is of value to me.
I quite like the idea of a horse and cart instead of a hurse. Or if miles need to be done – as perhaps I’ve died miles away from my plot, then I want an electric hurse when my carbon footprint – even in death – is as minimal as it needs to be.
One of my core values is community. Covid-19 robbed so many people of being able to come together as a community to say farewell at a funeral. I don’t want that. For me to be in #agoodplacetodie it needs to NOT be in a pandemic! My heart truly breaks for all those who have not been able to be part of a grieving community.
A good place to die, for me ultimately makes all my values for living all the more prevalent and precious.
So, I ask myself everyday:
“If what all that matters in the end is (put your own values in here) then how am I making it matter now?”
To be in #agoodplacetodie , I truly believe we need to be living well and in our own good place – in heart, body, soul and intention.
I am trying my best to live well, so that I can die well, in a good place.