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ANNIE
DTLAL Director - Poet Laureate

Living and Dying

 


“I am dying,” she told him.

“Darling, we are all dying,” was his reply.

 

Why wouldn’t anyone take her seriously? She hadn’t felt well for weeks … maybe months. Everyone … even doctors told her it was stress … that she needed to take more time for herself, not work such long hours, eat better, exercise more … the same old same old. But … she knew it was something else … not sure what, but something about her body told her there were underlying physical issues. She had no definite or specific symptoms … just things did not ‘feel’ right.

So … she cut back at work, visited a nutritionist for a healthy eating plan, joined a health and wellness center to do the proper exercise for her and even asked for simple things to do at home to increase her energy and stamina. On her own she decided to stop drinking coffee and soda only drinking herbal teas with local honey and brewed in natural alkaline water. 

After a month she did feel a bit better. She was even sleeping better and actually getting rest every night. Those last 10 stubborn pounds she had been fighting finally disappeared and she had more energy. Yet … she still knew something was not right.

Time to have everything checked out she decided. A visit with her doctor on her terms made sure she was tested for all the illnesses in her family background. There had to be something making her feel so bad. All the testing came back negative for the health issues in her family. But … there was something strange showing up along her spine and the base of her brain. The doctors screened and scanned for MS, fibromyalgia, even ALS and still nothing. 

The doctors and even specialists agreed that there was something … but no one could pinpoint what that something was. For now since there were no specific symptoms there was no treatment. She was told to keep up with her daily journal as she had been doing since decided something was wrong. She wrote down every body function, what she ate and drank, how much exercise, rest, sleep, etc. on a daily basis. 

Nothing changed, not even a pound lost or gained … yet … she still felt like crap.

In a dream her maternal grandmother came to her. She was reminded that the Cockrum’s always knew when they were going to die. Not a definite date and time, but an approximation regarding their death.

After that dream, she resigned herself to death … just not a how or when. She got her affairs in order just in case and wont on with her life. She still felt like crap most of the time but accepted it as her fate for now. The doctors all poked, prodded, tested and scanned every six months with no change in their findings.

She told no one about her health issues. Was amazed when people told her she looked wonderful with glowing skin and shiny hair … and there had been just enough weight loss and toning that even she knew her clothes fit really well and enhanced her overall appearance.

She even allowed herself to become involved with a loving caring man who supported her without suffocating. A real life partner … each complimented the other. But … she knew he must know what was going on. She had to tell him she was basically a time bomb ticking her life away.

When she finally told him she was dying, he just smiled and told her that everyone was dying and they would get through whatever was in the future together. She had hope and no longer cared how much time she would be alive … just live everyday as though it might be her last.

 

 

COUNTRY SONGS

 

Some country singer has a song titled

something like this:

“Live As if You are Dying”

Life …

Death…

the two cannot

be separated

From the moment

we are born

we begin not only

the process of living

but …

the process of dying

There is another quote

that goes something

like this:

“Live fast

Die Young

Leave a

Beautiful Corpse”

The older I become

the more meaningful

the phrase …

“Live each day

as though it

could be

your last”

For me, I plan

to live each day

to the fullest

doing what I

want along the way

Should I leave

the world a better

place in the process

so much the better …

I intend to go

out with a bang

not a whimper …

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GARRET SNUFF / JARS

By Annie - KITCHEN POETRY: Country Cooking & Love

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