For everything there is a season

March 20, 2009

OK It might be unwise for me to claim that I am playing catch-up again as this seems to be becoming my more of the rule than the exception 😦

As I mentioned last time, I had recently read The Time Traveller’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger and I promised to talk more about it, well I was writing my thoughts when I found myself going off on a little tangent, which I have decided to separate out from it for you now.

Feel free to skip this post if you find it a bit too depressing, but this post is about death (It also contains spoilers for The Time Traveller’s Wife). I think this is the first time I have come off the fence on my blog and declared the fact that I am not a particularly religious person.

I will take a minute as an aside to point out (as I know this is a hot button topic) that I am not particularly anti-religion and I bring up my children to be Catholics as that is Mrs Geek’s faith. I simply have no faith. This is not designed as a post about religion, other than relating to death it self, but it is hard to discuss one without the other. (I actually find theology an incredibly interesting topic, but one I would find very difficult to condense not to mention trivialise into a blog post.)

So anything post-death to me is a big unknown.

This being said I have never been particularly afraid of death, mainly because … well I just assumed it would happen when it happens. But now, since having children, things have changed. I don’t fear it as such, but thinking about it now holds an element of discomfort that never used to be there. It’s not because of some fear of the afterlife or even of death it self, but it’s more like the reason a tired 5 year old will protest about going to bed, even hours after bed time. It is the fear of missing something. I feel like it would be cheating me out of seeing my children’s future. It is the fear that my absence will cause them pain.

I have a friend whose Mum did not make it to her wedding day and whose Dad died just a few months before she gave birth to his grandson. Thankfully I can only imagine the pain of not having been able to share these moments with my parents.

In the story, I suppose this pain was partially mitigated by the fact that he had travelled to the future before he died so got to see some of the things he would have otherwise missed, but would that be enough?

Alas, I don’t have the ability to pop forward in time to see how things turned out so I guess for now I’ll just have to look both ways when I cross the road and try to get back into the habit of taking better care of myself (I have been running twice this week … it’s a start 🙂 )



January 9, 2009

Over the Christmas holidays Mrs Geek’s Gran (Joyce) lost her husband, known to the kids simply as Pat. It was not entirely unexpected, but it was not exactly a drawn out affair either.

It does however introduce the conundrum of where Joyce should now live. She is currently living in Scotland, where Pat’s family are, but none of her children are there and while she is she not exactly incapable of looking after herself, she does require a certain amount of care, and while Pat’s daughter has historically taken much of the load, it seems unreasonable to expect her to continue to do so now that Pat is gone. So on top of loosing her husband, Joyce is now looking at having to up sticks and move back to England.

Now while he was not exactly Mrs Geek’s grandfather as such, to my children he was.

It is hard to describe Pat. I don’t really feel I knew him myself all that well because he was a quiet man that kept himself to himself. For the first 5 years of knowing Mrs Geek, I bet I had only ever got 10 words out of him. Couple this with the fact that they lived in Scotland it was hard to know exactly how the kids would take the news. We actually found out on boxing day, but held off telling them until last weekend as we saw no benefit to spoiling their Christmas.

To be honest they took it as well as could be expected. They were both fairly stoic. I explained that he had been very poorly. But you could see that there were a lot of questions bouncing around in their heads, waiting to be answered.

Bart asked about specifics, what was wrong with him, what had caused it etc.

Lisa even asked if mummy was going to die because she was poorly (Mrs Geek, like almost everyone else I seem to have spoken to, had the bug that was going around this Christmas).

I hate having to break bad news to my kids, but to some extent they seem better emotionally balanced to deal with these things than I am.

I promise to be more up beat on my next post

Anyone got a spare philosophers stone

January 23, 2008

My little girl has just grasped the concept of death. I don’t know exactly where it came from, but she is now concerned.

This is the conversation we had the other day

Daughter : I’ll miss you very much
Me : Why, where are you going
D : When you die.
Me : What!?!?
D : Are you going to die soon? You have lines on your head ?!?!
Me : What (worried thoughts. is she psychic, can she sense death?)
D : The lines on your head … like Gran
Me : Oh you mean wrinkles (A bit harsh … but I’m not dying now so I’ll let is slide). No I’m not going to die, I want to watch you grow up.
D : When will you die (She is persistent)
Me : Never (in for a penny)
D : OK

So you see it would seem that I may have to up the anti on my training regime as I am now contractually* obliged to achieve immortality. Looking back though I’m still not sure I am happy about the “Lines like Gran” comment.

[* it’s a verbal contract … it’ll never hold up right …]